It may seem like a silly question, but certainly a valid concern – can you get a DUI on a bike? Although you wouldn’t think of a bike as a dangerous vehicle, especially if driving under the influence, you can certainly cause a lot of damage to yourself and others around you if you are trying to maneuver a bicycle while under the influence.
Although you wouldn’t consider driving a bike drunk would have extreme consequences, a DUI on a bicycle means the same kind of consequences a DUI in a car would get you. Although most of what these consequences depends on which country or state you live in, the fact remains that if you are over the 0.08 alcohol content limit, you are going to suffer consequences whether you’re driving a car or riding a bike.
DUI laws are defined by someone driving a vehicle (which includes bikes in most states) in a public place or road this is under the influence of drugs or alcohol. In most states, the definition includes all motor vehicles and doesn’t include bikes, but in most states, the laws adhere to bicycles as well. This also goes to cover motorcycles and other vehicles that you can drive on a public road and potentially end up hurting or worst yet, killing someone if driven over the limit.
Bicycles are considered a vehicle in most states, and the same sorts of consequences will apply to a drunk driver on a bike like a drunk driver in a car. Although it may seem kind of silly, since a care can do a lot of damage if crashing drunk into other cars or people, a bike is something you can ride on a highway or road, therefore, you could potentially really hurt yourself or others while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. So, practicing the best bike safety at all times is in everyone’s best interests.
While a person’s first time getting a DUI on a bike or a car is considered a misdemeanor, things will only elevate from there if this person continues to drive or ride a bike drunk or under the influence. There are all kinds of things to consider when processing a DUI on a bike, but more than likely consequences will include fines, possible suspension of license, possible jail time, having to do community service, having to take drug and alcohol therapy sessions or even getting an alcohol detection device installed within the vehicle.
When it comes to getting a DUI on a bike, if you didn’t hurt anyone in the process and got pulled over or stopped, it meant that there was probable cause to check up on you. Most of the tickets or fines are issued as a way to prevent any accidents from happening and getting the user to think responsibly next time, because next time could always be much worse.
If this is third or fourth time a person has gotten stopped for driving under the influence, it’s more than likely going to be a much stronger consequence. This would probably include jail time and could definitely include the suspension of a license and you can for sure expect a pretty hefty fine. These consequences will become even more elevated if you hurt or worse, killed someone in the process of driving under the influence. Not worth the risk at all, if you ask me.
Rules of Thumb
If you’ve been out drinking or have taken drugs, call someone to pick you up. Now a days you can even call driving services such as Lyft or Uber to come pick you up and you can more than likely even keep a bicycle in the back of the car in the trunk or the car could even have bicycle hookups in the back. This would be your safest option when you’re under the influence so you don’t hurt anyone and you don’t hurt yourself by getting into trouble with the law. If you go out and know you are going to be drinking, don’t even take the bike. Call some friends of pick you up or take advantage of these great ride sharing services that will take you from place to place without a problem. You can even access apps for phones with these services and a ride can get you with the ease of a click of a button. So simple! Take advantage of this simplicity by using them!
Not worth the Risk
Driving under the influence on a bike is not worth the risk, period. More than likely you will get prosecuted for riding drunk on a bike just as harshly as someone who has been driving a car, so don’t do that to yourself or your family. Think about these consequences before you go out into the world for a night of drinking or partying to avoid having to make responsible decision for yourself after you’re under the influence. Getting arrested or fined for DUI is a very hard thing to get off your record, and worse off, it’s a very dangerous thing because you could potentially kill or injure someone. Imagine having to live with yourself for getting a DUI or hurting someone when you could have just as easily made plans for yourself to be reconcile before a night out? Not worth it. Think and act responsibly to prevent injuring yourself and others – even if you are riding a bike!
Safety for All
No matter what, driving under the influence is a bad move. Prevent this by making plans ahead of time so you don’t have to worry about the legal consequences afterwards. Even the alcohol level worth prosecuting someone over is about one beer or one glass of wine, so odds are, even after one drink, you could get in big trouble driving or riding a bike. It’s not worth the risk hurting or killing someone, it’s not worth the risk hurting or killing yourself, and it’s definite not a fun thing to have to deal with.