Hamfist
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DUI Laws (Unites States In Particular)

Wed May 31, 2006 8:10 am

In addition to DUI laws, I presume most states have a law against open containers in a vehicle...

My question -- suppose four people (Persons A, B, C & D) are riding in Person A's vehicle. However, Person B is actually driving the vehicle. Person's C & D are riding in the back seat and are both consuming alcohol. Police pulls said vehicle over and discovers open containers. Who now has the legal problem? Person A -- because it's his vehicle? Person B -- because he's driving? Person's C & D -- because they are actually consuming?

(I realize this would probably vary from state to state, but what would the more common answer be?)
 
AsstChiefMark
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RE: DUI Laws (Unites States In Particular)

Wed May 31, 2006 8:13 am

B for allowing open containers. C & D for having open containers. A isn't in trouble unless everyone's drunk; then the car gets impounded because no one can legally drive it.

Mark
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Jetsgo
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RE: DUI Laws (Unites States In Particular)

Wed May 31, 2006 8:14 am

Is Person B insured to drive Person A's car? If not, that would probably be a whole new can of worms...


Chris
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AsstChiefMark
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RE: DUI Laws (Unites States In Particular)

Wed May 31, 2006 8:20 am

Quoting JetsGo (Reply 2):
Is Person B insured to drive Person A's car?

Most insurance companies temporarily cover other drivers permitted by the insured. For example, if I wanted my nephew to drive me in my truck to the store, he'd be covered.

Mark
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AirCop
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RE: DUI Laws (Unites States In Particular)

Wed May 31, 2006 9:20 am

Quoting AsstChiefMark (Reply 1):
B for allowing open containers. C & D for having open containers. A isn't in trouble unless everyone's drunk; then the car gets impounded because no one can legally drive it.

Pretty much the way it is. Highway Patrolman's dream three cites out of one stop. Change it from a private auto to a motorhome, then no one would get a ticket as long as passengers C & D are in the living area.
 
dc10s4ever
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RE: DUI Laws (Unites States In Particular)

Wed May 31, 2006 9:43 am

Person D, the cop for not being invityed to happi hour...another margrita fo4 me
 
ANCFlyer
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RE: DUI Laws (Unites States In Particular)

Wed May 31, 2006 11:49 am

The driver for operating a vehicle with open container - owner is irrelevent.

The two idiots consuming.
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YeahitsK
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RE: DUI Laws (Unites States In Particular)

Wed May 31, 2006 12:13 pm

Quoting JetsGo (Reply 2):
Is Person B insured to drive Person A's car? If not, that would probably be a whole new can of worms...
Chris

I haven't ever looked into it but I would think that the insurance companies would much rather have a sober designated driver person B than a covered but drunk Person A behind the wheel, especially if it means avoiding liability lawsuits.
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AsstChiefMark
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RE: DUI Laws (Unites States In Particular)

Wed May 31, 2006 12:59 pm

Quoting YeahitsK (Reply 7):
insurance companies would much rather have a sober designated driver person B than a covered

It doesn't work that way. Not at all.


Mark
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bristolflyer
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RE: DUI Laws (Unites States In Particular)

Wed May 31, 2006 2:18 pm

As a matter of interest, why is it illegal to have open alcohol containers in a car? Assuming of course that the driver is not drunk. I know it is 'legal' (even if not moral) to drive having had a small amount of alcohol so why is it illegal to have an open container in the car?

BF

PS I don't need any lectures on DUI thanks.
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57AZ
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RE: DUI Laws (Unites States In Particular)

Wed May 31, 2006 6:01 pm

Generally, the alcohol must not be accessible to the driver. The alcoholic containers should be kept in the trunk of a passenger sedan or other similar area inaccessible from the unpartitioned interior of the vehicle. In a passenger limousine, alcohol can generally be kept in the rear passenger area if the vehicle has a partition between the driver's cab and the passenger compartment. Also, depending on the state of the intoxicated passengers the driver might get charged with child abuse if there is a minor present in the vehicle (at least here in AZ). We see a lot of DUI/DWI cases elevated from misdemeanor to felony status due to the driver having a minor present as the Arizona Revised Statutes define DUI/DWI with a minor present in the car as Felony Child Abuse.

As to the insurance companies, coverage depends on your individual policy.
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UTA_flyinghigh
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RE: DUI Laws (Unites States In Particular)

Wed May 31, 2006 7:42 pm

Bouahahahaha !

Here in Europe the driver must not be incapacitated.
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KaiGywer
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RE: DUI Laws (Unites States In Particular)

Wed May 31, 2006 8:28 pm

Minnesota:
As long as B is sober, A is in the clear. C and D will get charged with open container, and B for allowing open container. If B is drunk, then both A and B will be charged with DUI.
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AirframeAS
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RE: DUI Laws (Unites States In Particular)

Fri Jun 02, 2006 2:14 am

Will somebody please explain to me as to WHY passengers riding on the backseat are charged with open containers even though they are not driving and/or not causing problems? I just dont get it....

And I wont buy this excuse...thats just lame:

Quoting 57AZ (Reply 10):
Generally, the alcohol must not be accessible to the driver.
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KaiGywer
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RE: DUI Laws (Unites States In Particular)

Fri Jun 02, 2006 2:19 am

Quoting AirframeAS (Reply 13):
Will somebody please explain to me as to WHY passengers riding on the backseat are charged with open containers even though they are not driving and/or not causing problems? I just dont get it....

And I wont buy this excuse...thats just lame:

There is no logical explanation, it's just the law. And for the record, I don't agree with the law either. (nor do I agree with 21 year drinking age)
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searpqx
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RE: DUI Laws (Unites States In Particular)

Fri Jun 02, 2006 2:19 am

Quoting AirframeAS (Reply 13):
Will somebody please explain to me as to WHY passengers riding on the backseat are charged with open containers even though they are not driving and/or not causing problems? I just dont get it....

And I wont buy this excuse...thats just lame:

Whether you want to 'buy it' or not is irrelevant, that is the rationale used behind open container laws. As for why so many state and local governments have such laws, well, we're the same country that says you can't sell alcohol (or in some places, anything for that matter anything) on a Sunday. We have a lot of puratinism in our laws that just don't make sense to the 'modern' mind.
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KaiGywer
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RE: DUI Laws (Unites States In Particular)

Fri Jun 02, 2006 2:23 am

Quoting Searpqx (Reply 15):
we're the same country that says you can't sell alcohol (or in some places, anything for that matter anything) on a Sunday

But in Norway, nothing (except convenience stores and restaurants) is open on Sundays. Yet, you can have open containers in your vehicle. Just don't drink and drive with a 0.02 limit.
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AirframeAS
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RE: DUI Laws (Unites States In Particular)

Fri Jun 02, 2006 2:34 am

Quoting Searpqx (Reply 15):
we're the same country that says you can't sell alcohol (or in some places, anything for that matter anything) on a Sunday.

Ive bought alcohol on a Sunday before. Please tell me you're kidding....
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searpqx
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RE: DUI Laws (Unites States In Particular)

Fri Jun 02, 2006 2:42 am

Quoting AirframeAS (Reply 17):
Ive bought alcohol on a Sunday before. Please tell me you're kidding....

Nope, many places have so called "Blue Laws" still on the books that limit what can be sold on Sundays. A county in New Jersey I believe, adjacent to NYC, prohibits selling of anything on Sunday, other than food. As of 2004 - 19 States still didn't allow liquor sales on Sunday.
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AirframeAS
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RE: DUI Laws (Unites States In Particular)

Fri Jun 02, 2006 7:28 am

Oh! 'Hard' liquor is what you can't buy on Sundays. You can still buy beer. I get it now.
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57AZ
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RE: DUI Laws (Unites States In Particular)

Fri Jun 02, 2006 7:08 pm

Quoting AirframeAS (Reply 13):
And I wont buy this excuse...thats just lame:

Quoting 57AZ (Reply 10):
Generally, the alcohol must not be accessible to the driver.


Arizona Revised Statutes: Title 4-251. Spirituous liquor in motor vehicles; prohibitions; violation; classification; exceptions; definitions

A. It is unlawful for any person to:

1. Consume spirituous liquor while operating or while within the passenger compartment of a motor vehicle that is located on any public highway or right-of-way of a public highway in this state.

2. Possess an open container of spirituous liquor within the passenger compartment of a motor vehicle that is located on any public highway or right-of-way of a public highway in this state.

B. A person who violates subsection A of this section is guilty of a class 2 misdemeanor.

C. This section does not apply to:

1. A passenger in any bus, limousine or taxi.

2. A passenger in the living quarters of a motor home as defined in section 28-4301.

D. For the purposes of this section:

1. "Motor vehicle" means any vehicle that is driven or drawn by mechanical power and that is designed primarily for use on public highways. Motor vehicle does not include a vehicle operated exclusively on rails.

2. "Open container" means any bottle, can, jar or other receptacle that contains spirituous liquor and that has been opened, has had its seal broken or the contents of which have been partially removed.

3. "Passenger compartment" means the area of a motor vehicle designed for the seating of the driver and other passengers of the vehicle. Passenger compartment includes an unlocked glove compartment and any unlocked portable devices within the immediate reach of the driver or any passengers. Passenger compartment does not include the trunk, a locked glove compartment or the area behind the last upright seat of a motor vehicle that is not equipped with a trunk.

4. "Public highway or right-of-way of a public highway" means the entire width between and immediately adjacent to the boundary lines of every way maintained by the federal government, this state or a county, city or town if any part of the way is generally open to the use of the public for purposes of vehicular travel.

Tennessee Code Annotated 55-10-416. Open container law.






(a) (1) No driver shall consume any alcoholic beverage or beer or possess an open container of alcoholic beverage or beer while operating a motor vehicle in this state.




(2) For purposes of this section:




(A) "Open container" means any container containing alcoholic beverages or beer, the contents of which are immediately capable of being consumed or the seal of which has been broken;




(B) An open container is in the possession of the driver when it is not in the possession of any passenger and is not located in a closed glove compartment, trunk or other nonpassenger area of the vehicle; and




(C) A motor vehicle is in operation if its engine is operating, whether or not the motor vehicle is moving.




(b) (1) A violation of this section is a Class C misdemeanor, punishable by fine only.




(2) For a violation of this section, a law enforcement officer shall issue a citation in lieu of continued custody, unless the offender refuses to sign and accept the citation, as provided in § 40-7-118.




(c) The provisions of this section shall not be construed to prohibit any municipality, by ordinance, or any county, by resolution, from prohibiting the passengers in a motor vehicle from consuming or possessing an alcoholic beverage or beer in an open container during the operation of such vehicle by its driver, or be construed to limit the penalties authorized by law for violation of such an ordinance or resolution.






[Acts 1994, ch. 638, § 1.]

Reason for the wording of the law is quite literally that while the passengers in the rear of the vehicle might have the open containers, there is the ever present possibility that they may provide their alcohol to the driver. As previously mentioned, accessibility to the driver is generally the standard. Most state statutes are similarly worded as they must comply with the Federal Highway Administration and Department of Transportation standards-failure to meet their requirements will result in highway/transportation funding being withheld.

As for Blue Laws, some states also restrict business operations on Sunday as well as hard liquor sales. In Tennessee, certain retailers (including grocers and 24 hour dry goods stores such as Walmart) are required to close between midnight and 12 noon on Sunday. Originally the laws had Puritanical virtues behind them but eventually many retailers used them to simply save money.

[Edited 2006-06-02 12:24:08]
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baylorairbear
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RE: DUI Laws (Unites States In Particular)

Fri Jun 02, 2006 8:06 pm

I would like to make a distinction between DUI and DWI, since that is always misunderstood in Texas.

It is legal for a person of age (21 in Texas) to be under the influence, so long as their BAC does not exceed .08. Persons under age can have no alcohol in their systems. Therefore, the only way you can illegally be "under the influence" is if you are under 21 and have alcohol in your system.

Persons of age can receive a DWI for operating a vehicle with a BAC over .08, but they can't be reprimanded for operating a vehicle with a BAC of .08 or less.

Make sense?

BAB
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KaiGywer
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RE: DUI Laws (Unites States In Particular)

Fri Jun 02, 2006 8:24 pm

Quoting BaylorAirBear (Reply 21):
Persons of age can receive a DWI for operating a vehicle with a BAC over .08, but they can't be reprimanded for operating a vehicle with a BAC of .08 or less.

A DWI can be issued even if a BAC of .08 is not met. The arresting officer just needs to argue that the driver was impaired. 0.08 is just the limit where you are automatically considered drunk regardless.


Edited for lack of "not"

[Edited 2006-06-02 13:41:10]
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baylorairbear
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RE: DUI Laws (Unites States In Particular)

Fri Jun 02, 2006 8:28 pm

Quoting KaiGywer (Reply 22):

A DWI can be issued even if a BAC of .08 is met. The arresting officer just needs to argue that the driver was impaired. 0.08 is just the limit where you are automatically considered drunk regardless.

Right, I'd forgotten that part. Thank you for the addition.

BAB  Smile
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MUWarriors
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RE: DUI Laws (Unites States In Particular)

Sat Jun 03, 2006 8:47 am

Quoting AirframeAS (Reply 19):
Oh! 'Hard' liquor is what you can't buy on Sundays. You can still buy beer. I get it now.

No in a lot of states, or counties or cities, where any and all alcohol is banned on Sundays. Where I grew up there was no alcohol sales on Sunday in our county. However the law has changed and now at restaurants they can serve hard liquor as long as it does not make more than a certain percent of the check. restraunts still cannot sell beer or wine on Sundays. Yes I know that sounds backwards, but thats the way it is.

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