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Can I Get a DUI If I Am Driving Something Other Than a Car?
Absolutely. State DUI laws are quite varied, but it is possible to get a DUI for operating some of the following vehicles:
- Lawn mower or other farm equipment
- Golf cart
- Horse or horse-drawn carriage
Boat or water vehicle (however, there is usually a separate law for Boating Under the Influence (BUI)
How Is It Possible to Get a DUI If I Am Driving Something Other than a Car?
Many state DUI laws will prohibit either the operation of a "vehicle" or of a "motor vehicle" while intoxicated or under the influence of drugs. The exact definition of "motor vehicle" and "vehicle" may not be specified in the law itself, and thus, it is up to the court to determine whether what the person was operating is a "vehicle" and if they are subject to DUI laws. The court may look at a number of factors such as:
If the vehicle is motorized or has a drive train, then someone can usually get a DUI for operating it under the influence. This includes mopeds and even bicycles, even if they are not being pedaled at the time the officer pulls an individual over. However, it would not include a skateboard.
If the vehicle is not motor-powered, it is not likely that someone can get a DUI for riding them under the influence, such as riding a horse or roller-skates
Do the Penalties Differ Depending on the Type of Vehicle?
DUI laws are different for every state, and a state may impose lesser charges if one gets a DUI on a bicycle or other vehicle as opposed to a car. It is generally wise to always designate a driver and stay away from operating any and all vehicles after drinking.
What Should I Do If I Am Charged with a DUI?
Regardless of the vehicle you were operating, if you are arrested for a DUI, you should contact a criminal defense lawyer immediately to learn about your rights and the defenses available to you. Likewise, if you are the victim of someone who was operating any vehicle under the influence of alcohol, you should contact a personal injury attorney immediately to seek just compensation for your injuries.
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Last Modified: 05-19-2014 11:52 AM PDT
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