Ask a Trooper: Rear view mirrors
Question: Does my pick-up need to have a mirror on the outside passenger side of the door? It has one on the driver’s side and a rear view on the windshield.
Answer: Being that the pickup has one on the windshield and one on the driver’s side it is legal. Minnesota State Statute (M.S.S.) 169.70 states in part, “Every motor vehicle which is so constructed, loaded or connected with another vehicle as to obstruct the driver’s view to the rear thereof from the driver’s position shall be equipped with a mirror so located as to reflect to the driver a view of the highway for a distance of at least 200 feet to the rear of such vehicle.”
All passenger vehicles must be equipped with rearview mirrors. Vehicles such as rental moving trucks, which are not designed to allow a view through the rear window, must be equipped with an additional side mirror. Pickup trucks, which are often used for hauling purposes, must also be equipped with an additional side mirror, as the side mirror will provide the driver with a clear view when transported materials obstruct sight through the rearview mirror.
I don’t think there is a new vehicle sold nowadays not equipped without a rearview and two side mirrors. It is my understanding that this is part of the federal motor vehicle safety standards, which our state adopted. Many years ago it was an option to have the passenger side mirror when you purchased a new car and cost extra. Anyway, when towing or pulling something behind you not only do you need a rearview mirror but a side mirror as well.
If you have any questions for future columns concerning motor vehicle traffic in Minnesota, please send your questions to: “ASK A TROOPER” c/o Sgt. Curt S. Mowers MN State Patrol P.O. Box 644 Brainerd, MN 56401 or email questions to firstname.lastname@example.org with Ask A Trooper in the subject line. Questions are edited.