Smart electric scooters, also known as e-scooters, have become very popular in recent years, particularly in large cities where driving is nearly impossible or parking is almost never easily found. However, these app-based scooters have brought along some controversy with the convenience they offer. And, as one Denver man recently found out, these devices can actually land you in hot water with the police.
In September, a man was riding his e-scooter just a block from Coors Field when he crashed it into a police officer and the officer’s patrol car. The police officer and his car ended up being fine, but the scooter rider suffered some minor injuries and was taken to an area hospital for treatment. He ended up being charged with reckless driving, DUI and careless driving which resulted in an injury. According to police, the scooter rider was clearly very intoxicated, although they were not able to give him any sobriety tests at the scene due to his injuries. The collision forced him to fly off the scooter, which is how he was injured.
Scooters Are Not the “Safe” Alternative to Drunk Driving
For many people, app-based scooters have become a way to avoid drinking and driving during bar hopping or other events where drinking is common; the Denver man, for example, was returning from a Colorado Rockies game. However, a person can still cause accidents with them and be charged with DUI. Some people simply don’t realize that driving an e-scooter still counts under state law as operating a vehicle.
There are far more suitable options than e-scooters and taxis to avoid the possibly of drinking and driving. Ride-sharing services such as Uber and Lyft, for example, have become very popular in recent years and are available in many areas. When you use these services, you will be transported wherever you need to go without having to drive yourself. While these rides likely cost more, over time, than an e-scooter if you have or will be buying one, they’re still far cheaper than receiving a DUI charge.
Planning ahead for rides when you will be drinking if a ride-sharing service comes with additional costs you can’t afford right now is another way to avoid a DUI. Friends, family and others can be a great network to work out a “ride-sharing” service of your own, and by pooling resources together, the cost can be incredibly low.
If you are convicted of a DUI, you can lose your ability to drive and may be facing jail time, fines and other serious consequences, such as sharply increased auto insurance rates and mandatory treatment classes. Because of everything that is on the line, it is imperative that you contact a lawyer in Denver, CO for help as soon as you can. Your attorney will help you throughout the case so your rights are protected and you always understand what is going on. They will also advise you on the wisest actions to take in your particular case.
Thanks to Richard J. Banta, P.C. for their insight into criminal law and DUI convictions.