OUI in Maine
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It’s Not Just About Cars...
OUI laws apply to any motor vehicles, including tractors, ATV’s snowmobiles, motorboats, motorcycles, and riding lawn-mowers.
Or Actually Going Anywhere…
Any action which can be interpreted as “attempting to operate” a motor vehicle while intoxicated is enough to be charged with OUI.
Some Related OUI Legal Terms and Definitions
Attempting to Operate – This can mean sitting on a tractor seat, getting into the driver’s side of a car, unmooring a boat, or any of many actions that convey an intent to begin using a motorized vehicle.
Legal Limit – There is no “legal limit.” A blood alcohol level of .08% or more is automatically illegal - but the state only needs to prove that the driver’s ability to operate a vehicle was impaired due to the use of intoxicants.
Field Sobriety Tests – These are tasks an officer can ask a driver to do that may reveal mental or physical impairment, such as counting backwards or walking a straight line.
Immediate Arrest - An officer may make an immediate arrest without running a field test if it appears the driver is operating impaired.
Vehicle - Any self-propelled vehicle not on tracks.
Legal Stops – Police may stop a motor vehicle for infractions, safety concerns, or if there is reason to think that a crime or motor vehicle law violation has occurred. These can range from erratic driving, to expired inspection stickers, defective lights, or not using seat belts.
Improper Stop - A traffic stop for which the officer cannot cite a safety issue, traffic law, or suspicion of criminal activity as reason.
HGN - The Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus test is most often used as a field test for drug impairment, measured by the driver’s ability to follow the movement of a pen or light.
These definitions cover only some of
To understand how to handle your particular situation, consult an attorney.
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