S-3187.1  _______________________________________________


                         SENATE BILL 6446



State of Washington   57th Legislature        2002 Regular Session


By Senator Kastama


Read first time 01/17/2002.  Referred to Committee on Transportation.

Authorizing branch classrooms for driver training schools.

    AN ACT Relating to driver training schools; and amending RCW 46.82.280 and 46.82.360.




    Sec. 1.  RCW 46.82.280 and 1986 c 80 s 1 are each amended to read as follows:

    Unless the context clearly requires otherwise, the definitions in this section shall apply throughout this chapter.

    (1) "Driver training school" means a commercial driver training school engaged in the business of giving instruction, for a fee, in the operation of automobiles.

    (2) "Director" means the director of the department of licensing of the state of Washington.

    (3) "Advisory committee" means the driving instructors' advisory committee as created in this chapter.

    (4) "Fraudulent practices" means any conduct or representation on the part of a licensee under this chapter tending to induce anyone to believe, or to give the impression, that a license to operate a motor vehicle or any other license granted by the director may be obtained by any means other than those prescribed by law, or furnishing or obtaining the same by illegal or improper means, or requesting, accepting, or collecting money for such purposes.

    (5) "Instructor" means any person employed by a driver training school to instruct persons in the operation of automobiles.

    (6) "Place of business" means a designated location at which the business of a driver training school is transacted and its records are kept.

    (7) "Branch classroom" means a designated location where driver training takes place that is separate from the established place of business.

    (8) "Person" means any individual, firm, corporation, partnership, or association.


    Sec. 2.  RCW 46.82.360 and 1989 c 337 s 19 are each amended to read as follows:

    The license of any driver training school or instructor may be suspended, revoked, denied, or refused renewal for failure to comply with the business practices specified in this section.

    (1) No place of business shall be established nor any business of a driver training school conducted or solicited within one thousand feet of an office or building owned or leased by the department of licensing in which examinations for drivers' licenses are conducted.  The distance of one thousand feet shall be measured along the public streets by the nearest route from the place of business to such building.

    (2) Any automobile used by a driver training school or an instructor for instruction purposes must be equipped with:

    (a) Dual controls for foot brake and clutch, or foot brake only in a vehicle equipped with an automatic transmission;

    (b) An instructor's rear view mirror; and

    (c) A sign displayed on the back or top, or both, of the vehicle not less than twenty inches in horizontal width or less than ten inches in vertical height and having the words "student driver" or "instruction car," or both, in legible, printed, English letters at least two and one-half inches in height near the top and the name of the school in similarly legible letters not less than one inch in height placed somewhere below the aforementioned words, and the street number and name and the telephone number in similarly legible letters at least one inch in height placed next below the name of the school.  The lettering and background colors shall be of contrasting shades so as to be clearly readable at one hundred feet in clear daylight.  The sign shall be displayed at all times when instruction is being given.

    (3) Instruction may not be given by an instructor to a student in an automobile unless the student possesses a current and valid instruction permit issued pursuant to RCW 46.20.055 or a current and valid driver's license.

    (4) No driver training school or instructor shall advertise or otherwise indicate that the issuance of a driver's license is guaranteed or assured as a result of the course of instruction offered.

    (5) No driver training school or instructor shall utilize any types of advertising without using the full, legal name of the school and identifying itself as a driver training school.  Items and services advertised must be available in a manner as might be expected by the average person reading the advertisement.

    (6) A driver training school shall have an established place of business owned, rented, or leased by the school and regularly occupied and used exclusively for the business of giving driver instruction.  The established place of business of a driver training school that applies for an initial license after July 23, 1989, shall be located in a district that is zoned for business or commercial purposes.

    (a) A driver training school may have branch classrooms as long as the school has an established place of business in this state.

    (i) The branch classroom may be in a location that is used for other educational purposes and need not be regularly occupied or used only for driver education.  If a driver training school commences a course at a branch classroom, the school may not change branch classroom locations until all the classes scheduled as part of the course have been held.  The only exception is when the branch classroom becomes unusable to the driver training school.

    (ii) The records of the driver training school need not be maintained at the branch classroom.  However, the driver training school must segregate the records for the branch classroom from the records for other classrooms used by the school and keep the records at an established place of business in this state.

    (b) The established place of business, branch ((office, or)) classroom, or advertised address of any such driver training school shall not consist of or include a house trailer, residence, tent, temporary stand, temporary address, bus, telephone answering service if such service is the sole means of contacting the driver training school, a room or rooms in a hotel or rooming house or apartment house, or premises occupied by a single or multiple-unit dwelling house.  ((To classify as a branch office or classroom the facility must be within a thirty-five mile radius of the established place of business.))

    (c) Nothing in this subsection may be construed as limiting the authority of local governments to grant conditional use permits or variances from zoning ordinances.

    (7) No driver training school or instructor shall conduct any type of instruction or training on a course used by the department of licensing for testing applicants for a Washington driver's license.

    (8) Each driver training school shall maintain records on all of its students, including the student's name and address, the starting and ending dates of instruction, the student's instruction permit or driver's license number, the type of training given, and the total number of hours of instruction.  Records of past students shall be maintained for five years following the completion of the instruction.

    (9) Each driver training school shall, at its established place of business or its branch classroom, display, in a place where it can be seen by all clients, a copy of the required minimum curriculum compiled by the driver advisory committee.  Copies of the required minimum curriculum are to be provided to driver training schools and instructors by the director.

    (10) Driver training schools and instructors shall submit to periodic inspections of their business practices, facilities, records, and insurance by authorized representatives of the director of the department of licensing.


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