It’s Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month, and Lerner and Rowe Law Group is here to shed some light on key issues surrounding motorcycles. There are plenty of myths and misconceptions out there when it comes to motorcycles and safety, so we’re here to set the record straight. Here are some common myths about motorcycles (plus the FACTS) from our motorcycle DUI lawyer.
Myth 1: Motorcyclists Face Less Severe Consequences
This is absolutely untrue. Just because you drive a motorcycle does not mean you will face lesser consequences if you are accused of a DUI. Motorcyclists face the same penalties as drivers of other vehicles do. And in Arizona, the consequences can be quite harsh.
In fact, Arizona is a zero-tolerance state, meaning that a law enforcement officer can arrest you even if your Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) is below the legal limit (which is 0.08%). Indeed, in Arizona, there is no legal minimum amount of alcohol that can be in a person’s bloodstream when driving. The general rule is if an officer believes (has probable cause to believe) you are “impaired to the slightest degree,” you can be arrested even with no proof of alcohol in your system.
Penalties for a first-time offense include the following:
- Jail time of 10 days or longer
- A fine of about $1,500 or more
- 90 day license suspension
- Mandatory Ignition Interlock Device installation
Ultimately, the level of penalties vary by the severity of the DUI. There exists an “extreme” DUI at 0.15% BAC, and a “super extreme” DUI at 0.20% BAC. As your BAC goes up, so does the level of the penalties.
If you need a motorcycle DUI attorney, contact Lerner and Rowe Law Group. We know how to defend you against the prosecution and will explore every angle to help try to get your charges dismissed or reduced.
Myth 2: You can Drive, as Long as you Don’t feel Impaired
This is another myth, and could be a particularly deadly one. Driving under the influence of drugs, alcohol, or other impairing substances can seriously harm the driver, passengers, and others on the road. Motorcyclists are especially vulnerable, too, since they don’t have the protections of a seatbelt or an airbag.
Let’s just examine the statistics (using 2017 data):
- The percentage of motorcycle drivers with a BAC above the legal limit and involved in fatal accidents is 27%. This is greater than the percentage of car drivers (21%) or SUV drivers (19%).
- 29% of all traffic fatalities in 2017 involved a driver with a BAC at or above 0.08%.
- Of all the alcohol-related fatal accidents in 2017, nearly 70% involved at least one driver with a BAC of 0.15% or higher.
It’s safe to say, then, that driving under the influence is certainly not very prudent. However, if you do find yourself arrested for a DUI or DWI, call an Arizona motorcycle DUI lawyer at Lerner and Rowe for a free legal consultation.
Myth 3: You Must Submit to a Breathalyzer Test
While this is untrue, there is still plenty of nuance involved. Arizona is an “implied consent” state. This means that when signing the contract to obtain your driver’s license, you agree to consent to any breath, blood, urine, or other tests to determine BAC if pulled over by a law enforcement officer.
With this being said, you can still refuse to take the test. However, doing so can result in the suspension of your license for one year – and that’s for a first refusal. Additionally, if you refuse, a law enforcement officer can request a search warrant and will then compel you to submit to such tests.
Once your license is suspended, you may be issued a temporary license that is effective for only 15 days. After that, however, your license may be suspended for the remainder of the 12 months or it may be reissued with the condition that you install and abide by an Ignition Interlock Device (IID) for a certain period of time.
Additional refusals in short timeframes can result in more severe consequences, such as a minimum two-year license suspension for second and third offenses.
There are some additional things to consider before refusing or consenting to the test:
- Have you informed of the consequences of refusal?
- Are there Reasonable grounds to suspect you were driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol?
- Have you been arrested for suspicion of DUI?
If you’re arrested for suspicion for DUI, and police are asking you to submit to a chemical test, you should immediately contact one of our motorcycle DUI attorneys at Lerner and Rowe Law Group. It’s crucial that law enforcement officers follow the proper procedures, and missing any one of the aforementioned points can bolster your defense case.
Need Help from a Motorcycle DUI Lawyer?
If you got arrested for DUI/DWI in Arizona, contact Lerner and Rowe Law Group today! Our motorcycle DUI lawyer knows how to maximally defend you against the prosecution. Call us anytime at 602-667-7777. Alternatively, you can reach us online via a contact form or through our LiveChat feature. Best of all? We offer affordable payment plans, so you don’t have to worry about incurring costs as we fight for you. In trouble with a DUI? Contact us today!
The information on this blog is for general information purposes only. Nothing herein should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship.