Don't Booze and Bike

Court rules DUI laws apply to bikes

By Kelvin Robinson
|  Friday, Apr 23, 2010  |  Updated 2:17 PM EDT
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Don't Booze and Bike

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(Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

Don't drink and drive; don't booze and bike. The D.C. Court of Appeals ruled Friday that the city's ban on driving under the influence also applies to bicyclists.

According to the law, drivers are prohibited from "operating a vehicle" under the influence of alcohol.

In January 2007, Baker Everton was arrested for riding his bike under the influence. According to the appeals court, police found him shouting next to his bike and barely able to stand. Officers warned him not to get on the bike, but he did it anyway. He then hit a child in a crosswalk before losing control and falling over.

Everton appealed his 2007 DUI conviction on the grounds that bikes are not vehicles. But the appeals court concluded that both the law's language and dictionary state otherwise.

According to both dictionary.com and the Merriam-Webster dictionary, a bicycle refers to "a vehicle with two wheels in tandem."

So from now on, if you decide to drink, don't think about getting on your bike, unless you want to pay. According to dcduilaws.com, your punishment includes fines that range from $300 to $10,000 and up to 25 days in jail.

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