ESB 6746



BYSenators Patrick, Madsen, Patterson, Nelson, Sutherland and Murray



Simplifying disposal of abandoned junk vehicles.



Senate Committee on Transportation


     Senate Hearing Date(s):January 30, 1990


Majority Report:     Do pass.

     Signed by Senators Patterson, Chairman; Thorsness, Vice Chairman; Barr, Bender, Hansen, Madsen, Nelson, Patrick, Sellar.


     Senate Staff:Brad Lovaas (786-7307)

                February 15, 1990



                 AS PASSED SENATE, FEBRUARY 13, 1990




Current statute defines a junk vehicle as meeting all of the following requirements:  (1) is three years or older; (2) is extremely damaged; (3) is apparently inoperable; (4) is not currently registered; and (5) has a fair market value equal to the value of scrap in it.


Current statute requires that a landowner wanting to dispose of a junk vehicle must first have a law enforcement officer verify that the vehicle meets all of the above mentioned criteria.  Then if information is available from the Department of Licensing on the registered and legal owners, the landowner must send to the vehicle owners a notification on a form from the department by certified mail.  If the car remains unclaimed for 15 days the landowner may dispose of the vehicle.


If no information is found by the department on the vehicles registered and legal owners, the landowner must place a legal notice of custody and sale into the county newspaper.  If the vehicle remains unclaimed after 20 days, then the landowner may dispose of the vehicle.


The current procedure is viewed as time consuming, expensive and cumbersome for disposing of junk vehicles.  Many landowners with junk vehicles sitting on their property are dumping these vehicles on others' property, usually remote areas, or alongside the roadway.




The requirement that notice to the owner of a junk vehicle is on a form furnished by the Department of Licensing and sent certified mail by the landowner where the junk vehicle sits is repealed.  The right of a district court hearing to contest the sale of a junk vehicle is repealed.  The provisions are repealed that require publication in the county newspaper of junk vehicles with no known owners on the department records.


A notice must be provided by the landowner to the vehicle owner based on information given by the inspecting law enforcement officer. The vehicle owner has the right to arrange for removal of the vehicles within 15 days.


A person complying in good faith with the requirement of this section is immune from any liability.


Appropriation:  none


Revenue:   none


Fiscal Note:    none requested


Senate Committee - Testified:   Mike Yeager, Washington Forest Protection Association (pro); Rick Jensen, Washington State Patrol (pro); Heather Hamilton, Department of Licensing (con)