The driver of a hearse was pulled over Monday after Nevada High Patrol Trooper Travis Smaka caught him driving on his own in the carpool, or high-occupancy vehicle (HOV), lane on Interstate 15 near the Las Vegas Strip, according to CNN.
“The driver informed me that he had someone who was deceased in the back of the vehicle," Smaka told the outlet.
A corpse was indeed present.
The officer’s bodycam video shows the driver, whose face is blurred, asking Smaka, “He won’t count?"
“He’s not with us anymore,” the trooper laughed. Luckily, the driver didn’t dig his own grave, and Smaka let him off with a warning.
Since mid-June, drivers who travel solo in I-15 HOV lanes are subject to a $250 fine, the Los Angeles Times reports, enforcement used to only apply during rush hour.
“Yes, it’s a person,” Trooper Jason Buratczuk told the outlet about the corpse. “But they’re not in a seat and they’re not living and breathing. This body was in the rear cargo area and that doesn’t qualify as a seat.”Had the deceased sat upfront, Buratczuk says, “The HOV violation is the least of your concerns.”
After the peculiar incident, Nevada Highway Patrol took to Twitter, saying, “I guess we should clarify this, living, breathing people count for the HOV lane.”