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Old 04-15-08, 09:39 AM   #1
fordfasterr
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Cyclists not required to submit to brethalizer tests in FL

I came across this in the Florida Bicycle Law Enforcement Guide.

This law states that you do not have to submit to a brethalizer test, however you may have to submit to an roadside sobriety test, like walking the line or touching your nose with your eyes closed, or even following the cops finger without moving your head, and possibly counting backwards from 100. (typical roadside sobriety tests..)

Quote:
*NOT TO DRIVE UNDER THE INFLUENCE
● It is unlawful to operate any vehicle while under
the influence of alcohol or drugs [316.193].

The requirement to submit to a breath test
[316.1932] does not apply to a cyclist, since con-
sent is deemed to have been given only by a person
with a driver's license who is operating a motor
vehicle.


● It is unlawful for any person to possess an open
container of an alcoholic beverage while operating
a vehicle, or while one is a passenger in or ON any
vehicle [316.1936(2)].

Also, after reading FS 316.1932, I found that you do not have to take any other type of test either, such as urine, or blood.

Last edited by fordfasterr; 04-15-08 at 09:47 AM.
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Old 04-15-08, 09:44 AM   #2
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Thanks for posting that. I wonder if it's the same in Iowa...
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Old 04-15-08, 10:13 AM   #3
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I have a very simple rule for drinking and driving: If I'm driving, I'm not drinking; if I'm drinking, I'm not driving. Never gave it much thought when applied to my bicycle, but somehow I think I would still stick to that rule knowing how I am after a couple martinis or white russians.
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Old 04-15-08, 12:33 PM   #4
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I drink and ride all the time..it's not that hard...being just stumbling drunk though...walking isn't even a good thing to do. I never get stumbling drunk, so I'm almost always good to ride when I've been drinking. I don't know why everyone is such a stiff about that around here.
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Old 04-15-08, 06:53 PM   #5
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You are not required in Florida to take a roadside sobriety test, either when driving or biking. For a driver, the officer can require you to take a breath test only after you have been arrested. To make a lawful arrest for DUI, the officer must have probable cause to believe you are driving while impaired. To determine if you are impaired, the officer gives you the roadside sobriety tests. If you refuse to take the test, the officer must use other evidence to determine whether you are impaired, like a driving pattern, speech, and your other actions. Once the officer makes an arrest, you have to take the breath test or risk losing your license. If you're tired, not feeling well, or, for that matter, drunk, there's not much sense in doing the roadsides. Just politely say, "thank you, but no." One does have the right not to provide evidence against oneself. Only after you are legally arrested do you have to take a breath test.

If you are concerned about these things, talk to a lawyer who defends DUIs, or one who prosecutes them. Don't rely on a book, a police officer (especially the one who is threatening you if you don't cooperate), or, worst of all, your pal who's had a few DUIs.
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Old 04-16-08, 03:36 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Kerlenbach View Post
Just politely say, "thank you, but no." One does have the right not to provide evidence against oneself. Only after you are legally arrested do you have to take a breath test.
One also shouldn't be driving in a condition where they are not capable of properly controlling a vehicle.

God I love the double stands of athe AnS crowd.
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Old 04-16-08, 05:06 AM   #7
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Frankly, I would much rather have drunks on bicycles than in cars. Neither is ideal, of course, but the thought of drunk-guided 2,000+ lb missiles shooting randomly on our roads scares the hell out of me. I would much rather take my chances with a 195 lb person on a wobbly bicycle travelling at 10 mph.

For the record, though, bicycling after drinking even a little alchohol is extremely difficult. I don't know how anybody could bicycle drunk. A recumbent tricycle would be a much better ride for drunks.

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Old 04-16-08, 05:19 AM   #8
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They may not get you with DUI but I bet they will invoke the public intoxication statutes...

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Old 04-16-08, 05:56 AM   #9
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They may not get you with DUI but I bet they will invoke the public intoxication statutes...

Aaron
I know you can still get in trouble. Ultimately, the law says it is illegal to operate a (vehicle) under the influence. A bicycle is considered a vehicle so you will get in trouble if you ride drunk. What I'm saying is that you just don't have to submit to a breath, urin, or blood test.
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Old 04-16-08, 08:53 AM   #10
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The law says motor vehicle. To my knowledge is doesn't anything about bikes, or skateboards, or segways, or tricycles....or hover boards for that matter.

And riding drunk or evern after 3 or 4 beers is nothing...whereas when you're driving you have to worry about having 2 beers because if by chance you get pulled over, the cop will smell it and he'll wonder if you've been drinking.
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Old 04-16-08, 09:11 AM   #11
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this is one of the few times I would like to have a bike NOT be considered a "vehicle".

As mentioned above, I would rather see a bunch of bicycles parked outside a bar, rather than a bunch of cars.
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Old 04-16-08, 10:06 AM   #12
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Old 04-16-08, 10:41 AM   #13
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generally speaking...you don't have to take a field sobriety test as doing so is a violation of your 5th amendment right not to be compelled to be a witness against yourself. That said, most states make "failure to comply with a law enforcement officer" a substantial offense where you lose your driver's license for a year automatically.

An assistant state's atty once told me that they'd rarely prosecute dwi cases without a field sobriety test because the lack of one makes proving the case too difficult. However with so many cars carrying cameras now it would be easier to show a jury that you're drunk without the test.

I don't have a problem with someone riding a bike after drinking. They aren't going to kill someone.
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Old 04-17-08, 11:28 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by GreenPremier View Post
whereas when you're driving you have to worry about having 2 beers because if by chance you get pulled over, the cop will smell it and he'll wonder if you've been drinking.
... and there is the best argument for driving fast if you have been drinking - to get home or to the next tavern as quickly as possible in order to reduce the amount of time on the road so that you will have less chance of bumping into cops.
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Old 04-20-08, 11:50 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by Kerlenbach View Post
You are not required in Florida to take a roadside sobriety test, either when driving or biking. For a driver, the officer can require you to take a breath test only after you have been arrested. To make a lawful arrest for DUI, the officer must have probable cause to believe you are driving while impaired. To determine if you are impaired, the officer gives you the roadside sobriety tests. If you refuse to take the test, the officer must use other evidence to determine whether you are impaired, like a driving pattern, speech, and your other actions. Once the officer makes an arrest, you have to take the breath test or risk losing your license. If you're tired, not feeling well, or, for that matter, drunk, there's not much sense in doing the roadsides. Just politely say, "thank you, but no." One does have the right not to provide evidence against oneself. Only after you are legally arrested do you have to take a breath test.
If you are concerned about these things, talk to a lawyer who defends DUIs, or one who prosecutes them. Don't rely on a book, a police officer (especially the one who is threatening you if you don't cooperate), or, worst of all, your pal who's had a few DUIs.
And even then you don't have to take it. You can refuse and your license may be suspended for failure to take the test, but they cannot force you to take the test. And, during the suspension, most people are eligible for a "hardship" license to be able to get to work, etc.

The only time they can force you to take a test, which involves tieing you down and drawing blood from you is when you are involved in an accident in which there was serious bodily injury to someone and the cops have probable cause to believe you were DUI.
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Old 04-20-08, 04:23 PM   #16
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If you ride a bicycle while drunk, you may very well ride into traffic and get hit. However, the odds of you killing a pedestrian or a motorist in a head-on collision are almost nil.

Moreover, there's a good chance that a really intoxicated cyclist will not even be able to lift a leg over the bike and get started and be unable to even get out of the parking lot without falling. In such a condition, the worst case scenario are some minor injuries and not remembering the next day where he left his bike the night before.

However, a motorist in the same condition will be entirely capable of getting into his car, starting it, and proceeding to kill somebody with it. This is because a bicycle requires a minimal amount of sobriety just to make it go, while a car does not.

Also, drunk cyclists generally don't fall asleep while riding. If they do, the resulting crash would be at a very low speed.
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Old 04-20-08, 04:47 PM   #17
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Moreover, there's a good chance that a really intoxicated cyclist will not even be able to lift a leg over the bike and get started and be unable to even get out of the parking lot without falling.
That's certainly my litmus test for deciding if I'm too drunk to ride.
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