RV Industry Association (RVIA) Manager of Government Affairs Nick Rudowich recently testified in support of legislation that would amend the allowable length of a travel trailer in Washington state law from a current limit of 40 feet in length to a new limit of 46 feet in length.
“Currently in Washington, travel trailers are limited by statute to an overall length of 40 feet, while most other states allow travel trailers to be 45 feet or longer in length,” said Rudowich in his testimony. “In fact, your neighbors in Idaho allow towable RVs up to 48 feet, and your neighbors to the south in Oregon allow towable RVs up to 45 feet.”
Washington’s travel trailer length became an issue last summer when the state decided to stop approving plans for travel trailers over 40 feet in length despite the fact that travel trailers over the 40 feet had been produced, sold, and registered in the state for decades. RVIA News and Insights reported that this decision negatively affects the RV industry and RV dealers in Washington who could see an immediate loss of product and a loss of considerable revenue to their businesses if RVs over 40 feet are no longer approved in the state.
Making the issue even more complicated is the fact that Washington is one of only two states to regulate the manufacturing of RVs. RV manufacturers comply with this process by submitting model plans to the Washington State Department of Labor and Industries and pay a fee for each plan submittal. Then Labor and Industries approves or denies the RV plans. After the model plan is approved, RV manufacturers purchase a Washington RV seal which is attached to the vehicle, indicating the RV may be sold to a consumer in Washington.
Rudowich and the rest of the state affairs team worked with Labor and Industries to come to an agreement that Labor and Industries would continue to approve travel trailer plans while work towards a legislative solution was underway. If the industry is successful in amending the travel trailer length through the passage of these bills, Labor and Industries will approve plans of travel trailers up to 46 feet in overall length. Unfortunately, if the legislation is unsuccessful, Labor and Industries has confirmed that it will cease approving plans of travel trailers over 40 feet in overall length.
Click here to read the full testimony and fact sheet on this issue.