For many people, the phrase "driving under the influence" elicits images of someone behind the wheel of a car. But did you know that you can be charged with DUI even if you are not driving a car? When someone consumes alcohol before they ride a bike, drive a boat, or even fly a plane, they may find themselves facing criminal charges.
Flying under the influence can carry more significant penalties than driving a vehicle under the influence. Under the Federal Aviation Regulations as enacted by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), flying under the influence is considered a federal crime. Under the law, no person is allowed to operate or act as a crewmember on an aircraft:
- Within 8 hours of consuming alcohol,
- While under the influence of alcohol,
- While using any drug that has an impact on their facilities, or
- Having a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) over .04%.
Any pilot who finds themselves in violation of these restrictions, which are stricter than those for driving a car under the influence, can face a license suspension among other consequences. Should the FAA decide to file legal charges, they can report the case to state or federal prosecutors.
Much like the drivers of motor vehicles, pilots are under an implied consent law. This means that pilots are required to submit to a chemical test that determines their BAC or face additional penalties and fines. Standard penalties for flying under the influence mirror those for driving under the influence, except that pilots are required to spend between 30 days and6 months in jail if found guilty. In some cases, penalties can reach 15 years in prison and $250,000 in fines.
Accused of Flying Under the Influence in OC?
Those who have been accused of flying under the influence (FUI) are facing a unique legal combination of administrative, federal, and state laws that govern their prosecution. However, those accused of FUI can use many of the same defense strategies employed for DUI.
Arrested for FUI at John Wayne, Ontario, or another local airport? Contact the Law Offices of Virginia L. Landry, Inc. to get started today.