WSR 99-07-059

PERMANENT RULES

DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION


[ Filed March 17, 1999, 9:37 a.m. ]

Date of Adoption: November 18, 1998.

Purpose: The current preferential loading WAC for Washington state ferries (WSF) needed to be streamlined, updated and made current with changing state policies, enabling legislation and WSF customer needs.

Citation of Existing Rules Affected by this Order: Amending WAC 468-300-700 Preferential loading.

Statutory Authority for Adoption: RCW 47.56.030, 47.60.140, 47.60.326.

Adopted under notice filed as WSR 98-20-092 on October 7, 1998.

Number of Sections Adopted in Order to Comply with Federal Statute: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; Federal Rules or Standards: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; or Recently Enacted State Statutes: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.

Number of Sections Adopted at Request of a Nongovernmental Entity: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.

Number of Sections Adopted on the Agency's Own Initiative: New 0, Amended 1, Repealed 0.

Number of Sections Adopted in Order to Clarify, Streamline, or Reform Agency Procedures: New 0, Amended 1, Repealed 0.

Number of Sections Adopted Using Negotiated Rule Making: New 0, Amended 1, Repealed 0; Pilot Rule Making: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; or Other Alternative Rule Making: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0. Effective Date of Rule: Thirty-one days after filing.

March 17, 1999

Tom Green, Chair

Transportation Commission

OTS-2754.4


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending Order 81, filed 2/16/96, effective 3/18/96)

WAC 468-300-700
Preferential loading.

In order to protect public health, safety and commerce; to encourage more efficient use of the ferry system; and to reduce dependency on single occupant private automobiles:

(1) Preferential loading privileges on vessels operated by Washington state ferries (WSF), exempting vehicles from the standard first-come first-served rule, shall be granted in the order set forth below((, to)):

(a) ((Emergency vehicles involved in or returning from their particular operations, and medical personnel traveling to unscheduled emergency calls (but not when returning from such calls, and not when traveling to or from their place of employment or to or from operations or procedures, whether emergency or not, which are scheduled enough in advance to allow ferry travel without preferential loading);

(b) Vehicles transporting persons with severe illnesses or severe disabilities such that the delay in loading which would otherwise cause health risks to those persons;

(c) Public or pupil transportation vehicles owned or operated by public or private transportation operators providing transit or charter service under a certificate of public convenience and necessity issued by the utilities and transportation commission of the state of Washington or owned and operated by a local school district or private school system;

(d) Commuter vanpools which are certified in the manner set forth in WAC 468-300-020;

(e) Commuter car pools which shall consist of a minimum number of persons as determined by ferry system management; and such minimum number shall in no case be less than three; and a formal registration system may be required by ferry system management;

(f))) An emergency medical vehicle, medical unit, aid unit, or ambulance dispatched to and returning from an emergency or nonemergency call while in service. Up to one additional vehicle may accompany a qualifying emergency medical vehicle or authorized med-evac when going to, but not when returning from, an emergency.

(b) A public police or fire vehicle only when responding to an emergency call, but not when returning from either an emergency or a nonemergency call. However, these vehicles will receive priority loading when they are returning from either an emergency or nonemergency call to Vashon Island or the San Juan Islands.

(c) A public utility or public utility support vehicle only when responding to an emergency call, but not when returning from either an emergency or a nonemergency call.

(d) Where a vehicle occupant states that an extended wait would cause detrimental health risks to a vehicle occupant, that vehicle will be allowed preferential loading whenever the afflicted occupant has provided a medical form certified by a physician that such preferential loading is required.

However, when that vehicle occupant has not submitted the proper medical form, preferential loading will be permissible based upon appropriate terminal staff determination.

(e) Preferential loading may be granted for vehicles carrying passengers needing to attend to a family member subject to risk of physical threat/harm or medical emergencies which requires the customer's timely access to the vessel's destination.

(f) A visibly marked school vehicle owned, operated, or sponsored by a school** when operating on regular schedules preapproved by the WSF or when advance notice is provided to each affected WSF terminal (**as defined in RCW 28A.150.010 (K-12), RCW 28A.150.020 (public schools), RCW 28A.195.010 (K-12 private schools), and RCW 28B.195.070 (secondary schools)).

(g) A visibly marked, preapproved or regularly scheduled publicly or privately owned public transportation vehicle** operating under a Washington state utilities and transportation commission certificate for public convenience and necessity (**as defined in RCW 81.68.010 (regular route/fixed termini), RCW 81.70.010 (charter and excursion)).

(h) A visibly marked nonprofit or publicly supported transportation vehicle** having provided each affected WSF terminal with advance notice and displaying a WSF permit making it readily identifiable as a public transportation vehicle (**as defined in chapter 81.66 RCW (private, nonprofit special needs)).

(i) A visibly marked and randomly scheduled private for profit transportation vehicle**operating under a Washington state utilities and transportation commission certificate for public convenience and necessity traveling on routes where WSF is the only major access for land-based traffic only when that private for profit transportation vehicle has provided each affected WSF terminal with a preapproved schedule and/or advance notice of its proposed sailing(s), (**as defined in chapter 81.68 RCW (regular route/fixed termini), chapter 81.70 RCW (charter and excursion), chapter 81.66 RCW (private nonprofit special needs), chapter 46.72 RCW (private, for hire)).

(j) A ride-sharing vehicle for persons with special transportation needs** transporting a minimum of three elderly and/or disabled riders or two elderly and/or disabled riders and an attendant displaying WSF ride-share registration program permit only when the operator of that vehicle has provided each affected WSF terminal with advance notice of its proposed sailing(s) (**as defined in RCW 46.74.010 (ride sharing for persons with special transportation needs)).

(k) A visibly marked, public ride-share vehicle** owned by a transit agency and leased out to members of the public through the transit agency's registration program only when the operator of that vehicle has provided each affected WSF terminal with advance notice of its proposed sailing(s) (**as defined in RCW 46.74.010 (commuter ride sharing)).

(l) A privately owned commuter ride-share vehicle** that visibly displays WSF approved identification markings readily identifiable by the public. There must be a minimum of three occupants in any such vehicle to receive preferential loading. Any such ride-share vehicle must be registered and in good standing in the WSF ride-share registration program (**as defined by RCW 46.74.010 (commuter ride sharing)).

(m) Specific to the Anacortes-San Juan Islands routes, a vehicle((s)) carrying livestock and traveling on routes where Washington state ferries is the only major access for land-based traffic, where such livestock (i) is raised for commercial purposes and is recognized by the department of agriculture, county agriculture soil and conservation service, as raised on a farm; or (ii) is traveling to participate in a 4H event sanctioned by ((the)) a county extension agent((;

(g) Commercial vehicles traveling on routes where Washington state ferries is the only major access for land-based traffic, provided that the vehicles are carrying wholesale perishable article(s) of commerce to be bought or sold in commercial activity or to be used in the production of other such articles;

(h) Overweight or oversize vehicles requiring transport at special times due to tidal conditions, vessel assignments, or availability of space;

(i) Specific to the Mukilteo-Clinton ferry route, vehicles engaged in the delivery of U.S. mail.  Vehicles must have documentation from the U.S. Postal Service showing they are in the actual process of delivering mail)).

(n) Specific to the Seattle-Bainbridge and Edmonds-Kingston ferry routes, where a vehicle occupant claims that an extended wait would cause detrimental health risks to their livestock en route to veterinarian services not available in the local community, that vehicle will be allowed preferential loading whenever the vehicle occupant has provided a medical form certified by a veterinarian that such preferential loading is required.

(o) Specific to the Fauntleroy-Vashon, Seattle-Bainbridge, Mukilteo-Clinton, and Anacortes-San Juan ferry routes, any mail delivery vehicle with proper documentation from the U.S. Postal Service showing that such vehicle is in the actual process of delivering mail.

(p) Specific to the Anacortes-San Juan Islands routes, a vehicle 20 ft. and over in length and 10,000 lbs. or greater in weight, provided that the vehicle is carrying or returning from carrying article(s) of commerce for purchase or sale in commercial activity.

(q) An oversized or overweight vehicle (20 ft. and over in length, and/or over 8 1/2 ft. in width, and 80,000 lbs. or greater in weight) requiring transport at special times due to tidal conditions, vessel assignments, or availability of space.

(r) A scheduled bicycle group as determined by WSF only when a representative of that group has provided WSF with advance notice of the proposed travel schedule.

(2) ((Such)) Preferential loading privileges shall be subject to the following conditions:

(a) Privileges shall be granted only where physical facilities are deemed by ((ferry system)) WSF management to be adequate to allow granting the privilege and achieving an efficient operation((;)).

(b) Subject to specified exceptions, documentation outlining qualifications for preferential loading and details of travel will be required in advance from all agencies, companies, or individuals requesting such privileges((;)).

(c) Privileges may be limited to specified time periods as determined by ((ferry system)) WSF management((;)).

(d) Privileges may require a minimum frequency of travel, as determined by ((ferry system)) WSF management((;)).

(e) Privileges may be limited to a specific number of vehicle deck spaces and passenger capacity for any one sailing((; and,)).

(f) Privileges may require arriving at the ferry terminal at a specified time prior to the scheduled sailing.

(3) To obtain more information about the documentation required and conditions imposed under subsection (2) of this section, call ((Washington state ferries')) WSF's general information number, (206) 464-6400, or a terminal on a route for which the preferential boarding right is requested.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 47.56.030 and 47.60.326.  96-05-048 (Order 81), 468-300-700, filed 2/16/96, effective 3/18/96; 93-18-006, 468-300-700, filed 8/19/93, effective 9/19/93; 87-12-005 (Order 61, Resolution No. 298), 468-300-700, filed 5/21/87.  Statutory Authority: RCW 47.60.326.  86-16-011 (Order 55, Resolution No. 273), 468-300-700, filed 7/25/86.  Statutory Authority: RCW 47.60.140.  80-09-056 (Order 57), 468-300-700, filed 7/15/80.]

Washington State Code Reviser's Office