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Carrying Firearms in Cars

Washington law prohibits the carrying of any loaded handgun in a vehicle without a concealed pistol license.   In addition to obtaining such a license, a person cannot carry a loaded handgun in any vehicle unless:

  • The handgun is on the licensee's person;
  • The licensee is within the vehicle at all times the handgun is present; or
  • The licensee is away from the vehicle and the handgun is locked within the vehicle and concealed from view.

An unloaded handgun kept in a vehicle must be locked within the vehicle and concealed from view.

Washington generally prohibits the possession or transportation of a loaded rifle or shotgun in or on a motor vehicle.4

Washington also prohibits carrying a firearm or ammunition in a transit vehicle or in or at a transit station with knowledge that this conduct is prohibited. “Transit station” is defined as all passenger facilities, structures, stops, shelters, bus zones, properties, and rights-of-way of all kinds that are owned, leased, held, or used by a transit authority for the purpose of providing public transportation services.

In addition, Washington prohibits any person from carrying, transporting or conveying any loaded firearm in or upon any “non-highway vehicle” except by permit from the director of fish and wildlife.  This includes ATVs, dirt bikes, etc.  The exception to this law is of course a loaded handgun by a concealed pistol licensee discussed above.  The state also prohibits carrying any loaded firearm upon any snowmobile except by permit from the director of fish and wildlife.

State administrative regulations may prohibit firearm possession in other locations.

To view the law in its entirety click here.

Bearing arms is your right, protecting your family is your responsibility.

In order to truly protect those you love, you must know all your rights, responsibilities and obligations as a gun owner. We have nearly 20 years dealing with firearms matters and the answer to nearly every question you may have is right here.