Can You Get a DUI in a Wheelchair?

By November 4, 2015Thomas Law Firm


In October, a Georgia man was accused of DUI and public intoxication after making a scene in a grocery store. Reportedly, he was backing around the store, running over plants and making a general mess of things. A breath test confirmed his intoxication, and he claimed to be under the influence of Valium, trazadone (an anti-depressant) and, of course, alcohol. He was not on a road, and he was not driving a car – but those are not rigid prerequisites for a DUI charge.

Are motorized wheelchairs considered a vehicle under Colorado law?

Well, let’s look at what the law says specifically. The law in question is C.R.S. 42-4-1301, and it reads as follows:

A person who drives a motor vehicle or vehicle under the influence of alcohol or one of more drugs, or a combination of both alcohol and one or more drugs, commits Driving Under the Influence.

A motor vehicle is any vehicle propelled by something other than muscular power, except vehicles on rails. A vehicle is anything capable of moving from place to place on wheels or tracks; a very broad definition. So, feasibly, it is possible to be charged with DUI for operating a motorized wheelchair under the influence, as messed up as that sounds.

The law is the law, though – you can get a motorized wheelchair DUI, a tractor DUI, an ATV DUI – anything with a motor. If you are facing charges of driving under the influence, your best bet for getting your penalties reduced is to speak to a DUI attorney.

Thomas Law Firm – Denver DUI Lawyers

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