There are a lot of ways to get around in Minnesota, even in the winter. However, many residents still think you have to be behind the wheel of a car in order to get a DWI. Winter outdoor enthusiasts, beware: you will be charged if you are found operating a snowmobile under the influence of alcohol or controlled substances. Much like a DWI, reckless behavior while under the influence carries consequences including jail time and hefty fines.
Snowmobiles, ATVs, boats, and even lawnmowers – all of those vehicles run on motors with varying degrees of power, but if you are riding them under the influence, it is illegal. A first-time violation is punishable by up to 90 days in jail, a $1000 fine, and the loss of snowmobiling privileges for one year. Any additional aggravating factors, increases the time and punishment, including:
- DWI history
- Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) greater than 0.16
- Presence of child under 16 on the snowmobile at the time of the offense
If any of these elements are involved, the offender will receive a higher degree of SWI (gross misdemeanor or felony) and could incur harsher penalties. The following are punishments for a gross misdemeanor SWI violation:
- A maximum fine of $3,000
- An extended period of mandatory jail time
- Long-term monitoring programs
- Chemical Dependency Assessments
- Loss of driver’s license privileges
- Plate impoundment of all motor vehicles owned by the offender
- Forfeiture of the snowmobile involved in the incident
Plan a sober ride this winter, whether you’re taking the road or the slopes home.
If you need help posting bail, don’t hesitate to contact AAA Bail Bonds. Our bail bondsman are available 24 hours a day and can bail you out of jail any time, day or night.