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WEST VIRGINIA CODE

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CHAPTER 17C. TRAFFIC REGULATIONS AND LAWS OF THE ROAD.

ARTICLE 5D. OPEN CONTAINER LAWS.

§17C-5D-2. Definitions.

For the purposes of this article, the words or terms defined in this article have the meanings ascribed to them:

(a) "Alcoholic beverage" means:

(1) Alcoholic liquor as defined in section five, article one, chapter sixty of this code; and

(2) Nonintoxicating beer as defined in section three, article sixteen, chapter eleven of this code.

(b) "Motor vehicle" means a vehicle driven or drawn by mechanical power and manufactured primarily for use on public highways, but does not include a vehicle operated solely on a rail or rails.

(c) "Open alcoholic beverage container" means any bottle, can or other receptacle that:

(1) Contains any amount of alcoholic beverage; and

(2)(A) Is open or has a broken seal; or

(B) Has had its contents partially removed.

(d) "Passenger area of a motor vehicle" means the area designed to seat the driver and passengers while the motor vehicle is in operation and any area that is readily accessible to the driver or a passenger while in their seating positions. For purposes of this article, the passenger area of a motor vehicle does not include:

(1) (A) A locked glove compartment; or

(B) A fixed center console or other similar fixed compartment that is locked;

(2) In a motor vehicle that is not equipped with a trunk;

(A) The area behind the last upright seat; or

(B) An area not normally occupied by the driver or a passenger; or

(3) In a pickup truck that has no trunk, camper top or separate enclosed area other than the cab of the truck, in the area behind the front seat of the truck in a locked case or container located so as to not be readily accessible to the driver or passengers while in their seating positions.

(e) "Public highway or right-of-way of a public highway" means the entire width between and immediately adjacent to the boundary lines of every way that is publicly maintained, when any part thereof is open to the use of the public for purposes of vehicular travel.

Note: WV Code updated with legislation passed through the 2020 Regular Session
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