Have you ever driven yourself to the pub for a few drinks (and a few laughs) with some friends, and then after a few hours, you suddenly find yourself too intoxicated to drive yourself home? You call an Uber, go to bed, wake up hungover, and annoyingly arrange to pick up your car the next morning, aggravating your headache further. Well, next time, you should consider cycling to your local.
You can’t be charged with a drink driving offence under New Zealand law while riding a bike. Excess Breath/Blood Alcohol (‘EBA’) charges only apply if you drive or attempt to drive a motor vehicle. A bike is not considered a motor vehicle, nor is an electric bike, so long as it’s less than 300 watts.
However, riding drunk is not without risk. While EBA charges can only apply while driving motor vehicles, some other charges (such as careless driving) apply to any vehicle, not just vehicles with motors. Someone riding drunk (or skateboarding, scootering or rollerblading) could be charged with careless driving if it can be shown they have used their vehicle carelessly or without reasonable consideration for other persons.
Next time, save some petrol and ‘get on ya bike’ to meet your mates at the pub. But don’t be an idiot.
Disclaimer: iCLAW Culliney and Partners does not encourage or authorise careless or reckless drinking, driving or cycling, that would put any person (bystanders or cyclist) in danger. We encourage the promotion of the awareness of the safety of others, and the decrease in drink-driving accidents.