You Don't Have to Operate a Car in California to Get a DUI

Posted by Troy Slaten | Nov 10, 2013 | 0 Comments

A DUI arrest can happen to anyone, even drivers who aren't operating cars! A man in Maine was recently arrested for driver a lawn motor while under the influence of alcohol. 51-year-old Tony Caulder showed up at a local convenience store attempting to buy beer. He was turned away because the clerk felt that Caulder was already too drunk. As he left store employees checked to make sure he was not driving a vehicle, when they saw him climb on a lawn mower, they called the police. Local police were able to catch Caulder right away, since he was only traveling about 5 mph, and he was arrested for suspicion of DUI.

Operating any type of vehicle is illegal if the driver is under the influence of drugs or alcohol and a lawnmower is far from the strangest thing to fall under this category. Last year, for example, a man in Kentucky was arrested for riding a horse while drunk.  A 55 year old man was riding a trail on his horse when police say they noticed him swaying as he dismounted. He was found to have twice the legal limit of alcohol in his system and was taken into custody for operating a non-motorized vehicle while intoxicated.

Lawmakers feel that an impaired driver is more likely to use poor judgment, make errors or fail to react quickly to sudden threats when they are under the influence of alcohol or drugs. For these reasons, drivers of any type of vehicle can be charged with DUI, even if their vehicle can be easily outrun or literally has a mind of its own. California has laws that require all operators of bicycles, motorized scooters, mobility devices and low-speed vehicles like lawn mowers abide by all laws of the road. So if you have had a drink and feel like doing some yard work ,you better stick to racking.

About the Author

Troy Slaten

Troy Slaten is the managing attorney for Floyd, Skeren & Kelly's Criminal Defense practice. He graduated with honors from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). He then went on to earn his law degree from Pepperdine University School of Law.


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