The dangers of drunk driving do not just apply to driver’s of cars and trucks. Drivers of other motor vehicles, including scooters, boats, and ATV’s are also at risk of causing serious injuries and fatalities. This past weekend, a University of Florida football player was charged criminally after allegedly riding a scooter while under the influence.
Drunk-driving poses a notorious risk to pedestrians, cyclists and other motorists sharing the road. During the summer, especially around holiday weekends, including the Fourth of July, motorists and their passengers are at a high risk of drinking and driving accidents. Our Fort Lauderdale accident attorneys are committed to helping the victims of DUI injury protect their rights after a collision. In addition to civil liability, DUI offenders can also be held criminally liable and face serious penalties.
A University of Florida football player was arrested over the weekend after being accused of operating his scooter while under the influence. The 19-year-old freshman was a walk-on Florida punter and charged with DUI. According to reports, the player was arrested by Gainesville Police after he was spotted running a stop sign while on his scooter.
Many South Florida residents will use a golf-cart, scooter or other non-traditional vehicle to get around. While these vehicles may seem safer to operate, drivers can still be held liable if they are found to be drinking and driving. These vehicles can also pose a significant risk to other motorists, pedestrians as well as cyclists and other bystanders.
The Florida punter allegedly ran a stop light in front of a police officer who was waiting to pass through the intersection. When the football player saw the police car, he swerved to avoid being seen and almost fell off his scooter. Police reports also indicated that he was visibly intoxicated. The officer also indicated that the punter pulled out his cell phone and tried to drive off before being pulled over.
When a driver is under the suspicion of alcohol use, there will be an initial investigation to test for blood-alcohol content. In the event of an accident or injury, these investigations are taken more seriously and drivers will be heavily scrutinized. In addition to criminal penalties, drivers can also be held civilly liable for all injuries and related expenses, including medical costs, long-term care needs, lost wages, pain and suffering and any additional losses related to the accident.
The defendant in this case was apprehended at a nearby parking garage where the officer noted in his police report the smell of alcohol. The officer also noted in his report that the player had bloodshot eyes and dilated pupils, both indications of alcohol use and intoxication. The underage player refused to submit to a blood-alcohol test and admitted to being at a bar, though denied that he was drinking. He was booked in jail. In addition to criminal penalties, he will likely face disciplinary measures from the university.
Florida drivers should remember that drinking and driving can be dangerous for car drivers, motorcyclists and truck drivers as well as those operating other motor vehicles, including scooters. Drivers of scooters and all motor vehicles should remember that criminal penalties can be severe and that serious accidents and injuries can arise from a drunk driving collision.
If you or someone you love has been injured or killed in a car accident, call Freeman, Mallard, Sharp & Gonzalez — 1-800-561-7777 for a free appointment to discuss your rights.
More Blog Entries:
New Stats Show Drunk Drivers Remains a Big Problem on Florida Roadways, Fort Lauderdale Car Accident Attorney Blog, May5 , 2013
Car Accidents and Teenage Fatalities on the Rise in Florida, Fort Lauderdale Car Accident Attorney Blog, April 30, 2013