Driving under the influence or DUI is a very serious offense that can land a person in jail or even in prison. Hefty fines come along with a conviction for a DUI. You can end up with a felony charge on your record, especially if you hit another vehicle and cause damage to it or other property or injury or — even worse, death — to another person. However, there is often some confusion regarding the operation of a vehicle other than a car, truck or motorcycle. You might wonder what the consequences are if you are operating a golf cart while intoxicated.
Can You Get a DUI Operating a Golf Cart?
In the state of Florida, it is possible for a person can be convicted of a DUI while operating a golf cart. If the individual is found to be under the influence of alcohol or drugs and uses the golf cart in an erratic manner, they can be arrested for a DUI.
In spite of the fact that a golf cart is a very slow moving vehicle, if a person is found operating one over the legal alcohol limit of 0.08, it is considered a DUI because the individual is not capable of handling the vehicle in a safe and normal manner. When someone is legally intoxicated, they have a slower reaction time, poorer judgment and in general will not operate a vehicle in the normal way as they would while having a blood alcohol concentration of zero.
What Type of Vehicle is Considered to be a Golf Cart?
A golf cart is considered a motor vehicle that is only used while on a golf course. There is generally no insurance or registration necessary to operate one of these vehicles.
- Golf carts are factory-made motor vehicles intended for use on golf courses for sports and recreation. Golf carts should not exceed 20 miles per hour in speed. Sometimes golf carts are permitted on roads but typically only in specifically designated areas with signs posted. Most golf carts lack safety features like roll bars, seat-belts and safety windshields, so areas of travel are restricted for the safety of drivers.
- Low-speed Vehicles are any four-wheeled electric vehicles with a maximum speed between 20 miles per hour and 25 miles per hour. Local jurisdictions typically limit the roads where LSVs are permitted to operate. These roads may not have speed limits greater than 35 miles per hour. LSVs also come furnished with many standard safety features of a car.
What are the consequences of a golf cart DUI?
First time offenders of DUI in Florida can expect some serious consequences including:
- Fine – $250 to $500
- Community Service – 50 Hours
- Probation – Not more than 1 Year
- Imprisonment – Not more than 6 Months
- Imprisonment with BAL of .08 or higher with a minor in the vehicle, not more than 9 months
- License Revocation – Minimum of 180 days
- DUI School – 12 Hours
These are not the only consequences that some people will have to face. If someone has caused an accident that resulted in the injury or death of another person and they were under the influence, then they may be charged with both criminal and civil liability. Some recent suits for civil liability in DUI cases have ranged from $310,000 to $13 million dollars in restitution.
Have You Been Charged With a Golf Cart DUI?
If you have been injured due to be hit by an intoxicated driver you need an experienced attorney to fight for the compensation that you have a right to. Call toll free at 1-800-887-5895 or contact Oldham & Smith online today.