For some people who know that they will be drinking with friends, it may make more sense to take a bike instead of a car to the party.
In Connecticut, however, you may receive harsh penalties for biking while under the influence.
Connecticut law treats bicycles as motor vehicles
According to Bikeleague.org, Connecticut laws classify bicycles in the same category as motor vehicles. This means if an officer pulls you over during an intoxicated bike ride, you may face the same penalties as if you were driving under the influence (DUI). You are still subject to legal blood alcohol level requirements and may receive a breathalyzer.
Penalties in the state for DUIs consist of the following:
- License suspension or revocation
- Fines and/or jail time
- Community service
Drunk biking may injure people and property
While it may seem far-fetched, drunk biking may result in you being liable for someone else’s injuries. If you run into a pedestrian, for example, you are responsible for any injuries he or she sustains as a result. Additionally, you are liable for any property you may destroy in the process. If you run into a parked car, the owner can bring a lawsuit against you to repair his or her vehicle. If you accidentally run into a small child and kill him or her, you may very well receive charges for vehicular manslaughter.
While it may seem like biking is a better alternative to driving while drinking, the law treats them as one and the same. You will receive the same harsh penalties as people who get behind the wheel after too much to drink.