Segway DUI? Not in Minnesota, Court Rules
It's possible to get a DUI charge on almost any vehicle: a Zamboni, a buggy, a motorized arm chair, we've seen it all. But apparently a Segway is where Minnesota draws the line.
A state court of appeals ruled that the self-balancing, two-wheeled, 95-pound personal transit machine can be driven while drunk without violating the law. Or at least without violating any laws about driving while intoxicated.
That's good news for Mark Greenman, who was arrested for a DUI while riding his Segway last year. And it wasn't his first Segway DUI, either.
An officer saw Greenman weaving his way home one evening last February. After the Segway veered into the roadway, he pulled Greenman over, according to Minneapolis-St. Paul's KMSP-TV.
With a blood alcohol content of 0.19%, Greenman clearly failed his sobriety test. But he still managed to escape punishment for a DUI when the court ruled in his favor.
The court ruled that the Segway is more like a pedestrian than a motor vehicle, given the fact that its top speed is still under 15 miles per hour, the Twin Cities' WCCO-TV reports. It falls in the same category as bicycles, scooter chairs, and wheelchairs under state law.
Those are all vehicles that are exempt from Minnesota's DUI laws under the assumption that they aren't meant to be driven on the road.
That's especially good for Greenman because if the Segway were considered a vehicle, he could potentially have gotten three DUIs. Besides this incident, he's been arrested two other times while riding his Segway home from the bar.
All turned out well in the end for Mark Greenman and fellow Minnesota Segway afficionados, but that doesn't mean every person's drunken Segway ride will end the same way.
Each state makes its own DUI laws. So while Segways, bikes, and motorized chairs aren't considered vehicles under Minnesota's DUI law, they very well might be in your home state. It's probably still best to call a cab or find a designated driver after "last round" is called.
- Elements of a DUI Offense (FindLaw)
- The FindLaw Guide to DUI Charges (FindLaw - Free Download)
- Top 5 Strangest Vehicles People Have Driven Drunk (FindLaw's Legally Weird)
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