DUI in Non-Roadworthy Vehicles: Boats, Planes, Horses, Snowmobiles, etc
You can get a DUI on vehicles not meant for the highway. If you drink and then ride on anything, you may be susceptible to getting a “DUI”
The “D” in DUI stands for “Driving” under the influence. Some jurisdictions have expanded the term to include several other activities, such as riding, biking, boating, steering, and flying. Every state has BUI laws – making it illegal to operate a boat under the influence of alcohol or drugs to the extent that your normal faculties are impaired, or per se BUI laws making it illegal to operate a boat over a certain BAC.
Flying under the influence is also a punishable offense, and a person arrested for FUI may be charged under federal and state law. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) strictly prohibits all crew members of any aircraft (commercial or private) from consuming alcohol within eight hours of a flight, flying while under the influence of drugs, or with a BAC over .04 percent. Violations may result in significant fines, imprisonment, and revocation of your pilot’s license. Any pilot suspected of FUI must submit to a chemical test upon request, and refusal to submit results in fines and license suspension and/or revocation.
Any pilot who is convicted of DUI must report it to the FAA within a certain time frame (usually within 60 days of the conviction). If you are a pilot and you have received any type of DUI, is highly recommended that you consult with an experienced DUI attorney who understands the interplay of the FAA and DUI cases. You will need to know where, when, and how it must be reported. A suspension of your drivers license as a result of the DUI or refusal to submit to a chemical test must also be reported. Failure to report a conviction or suspension to the FAA within the required time frame could result in further penalties. Punishments for FUI are severe and may result in the loss of your pilot’s AND driver’s licenses. If you have been arrested for FUI/FWI consult with an experienced DUI lawyer immediately to minimize the risks
Other methods of transportation have been included in the definition of driving as well. Snowmobiles are considered vehicles for DUI purposes in the snow states, such as in Michigan, Nebraska, and New Hampshire. Some states, like in Oregon and California, make it illegal to ride a bike while under the influence. Other states do not consider a bike to be a vehicle for DUI purposes, and will not arrest someone for biking under the influence (such as in Louisiana and Washington).
Tractors and other motorized farming equipment have in rare cares been considered vehicles. In Kentucky and New Mexico for example, it was held to be illegal to operate a farm tractor while under the influence. Golf carts, scooters, mopeds, horses, ATV’s and helicopters are other methods of transportation that may apply to DUI laws. Check with your local laws for more information.