After an evening out with friends, you may decide to call it a night and head home. Perhaps it doesn’t take you long to realize you have made a mistake and that you are in no shape to drive. For your own safety and the safety of others, you pull off the road, recline your seat and take a nap, expecting to resume your trip when you have sobered up.
However, a police officer tapping on your window may spell trouble, especially if your blood alcohol concentration is at or above the legal limit, which is .08. In Texas and many other states, you may face a drunk driving charge even if the vehicle you are in is not moving. You may find it interesting to learn of other ways besides driving a car that police may legitimately arrest you for DWI.
Nuances of the law
Sleeping in a parked vehicle does not protect you from a DWI arrest. Even if you are in the passenger seat, as long as the motor is running, the keys are in the ignition or you have access to the keys, officers may determine that you are in physical control of the vehicle. Being in control of the vehicle when your BAC is past the legal limit may lead to your arrest.
Texas DWI laws focus primarily on motor vehicles. This means you may be able to ride a horse or bike without fearing an arrest unless police believe you are endangering yourself or others in the process. However, other motorized vehicles, such as lawn mowers, tractors or electric scooters may not pass the test. Operating any of these after drinking alcohol is not a wise idea for your own safety as well as because of the legal risk you may be taking.
Boating while impaired
One of the most dangerous activities to engage in while drinking is boating. If you take your boat to one of the nearby lakes or rivers or you travel to the Gulf to fish or relax, you can be assured that police are on the lookout for those who operate their crafts while impaired. Just as your reflexes are important while driving a car, you also need to remain alert behind the controls of a boat. Alcohol can greatly impair your ability to react quickly to avoid disaster.
Facing charges for DWI under any of these circumstances is something you should not do without the skill of an attorney. Your legal counsel will evaluate the circumstances of your arrest and examine the evidence before building a solid defense strategy to help you minimize the negative consequences you face.