We’ve previously discussed how you can still get a DUI for riding a bike, operating a boat, using a motorized scooter or even riding a horse under the influence, but it is important to recognize which means of transportation can and cannot be legally operated under the influence. After all, it’s important to know if you can get a DUI on a skateboard, rollerskates or any other similar device in California before you risk getting a drunk driving conviction.
Why the Definition of “Vehicle” Matters
A man in Scotland, was once charged with drunk driving for bouncing down the street on a large ball called a Space Hopper. The intoxicated man even tried to evade the police on his “vehicle,” but was soon apprehended. While he could likely have any police evasion charges dropped, DUI charges are no laughing matter even if they involve strange circumstances.
So What is a Vehicle When it Comes to DUI Law?
This same circumstance wouldn’t have resulted in a DUI in California though. In fact, the state driving code specifically defines a vehicle as something that is self-propelled or powered by something other than a human. This means that while riding a horse could result in a DUI because they are literally “horse powered,” you’re pretty much safe if you happen to be operating a bouncy ball, pogo stick, skateboard or rollerskates.
You might notice that while we previously mentioned that you can be charged with drunk driving if you are operating a bicycle, that is only because there is a specific law banning the operation of a bicycle under the influence of drugs or alcohol. As for other, more whimsical modes of transportation, they are alright as long as they are human-powered.
That being said, electric skateboards are technically vehicles under California law and can leave intoxicated riders with a DUI.
Drinking in Public Charges Can Still Apply
Of course, that doesn’t mean you should get hammered and go jumping down the street on a pogo stick, even if you don’t value your own safety. If you did decide to hop down the road while intoxicated, police could still charge you with being drunk in public and/or disturbing the peace -and in either case, you’d probably still want to contact a lawyer as soon as possible.
If you are accused of drunk driving, being publicly intoxicated or any similar crime, Peter M. Liss can help. He can be reached 24/7 and offers a free initial consultation. To schedule an appointment, please call (760) 643-4050.
Creative Commons Image by William Murphy