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E-scooter rider caught drink-riding

E-scooter rider caught drink-riding
Brendan Rees

Police have put e-scooter riders on notice after a man was caught allegedly drink-riding almost three times over the legal blood alcohol limit in the CBD.

A 32-year-old was riding a “trial-operated e-scooter” at the intersection of Lonsdale and Exhibition streets at 5.45pm on July 28 when he was intercepted by State Highway Patrol officers.

Police allege the Fitzroy North man returned a breath alcohol reading of 0.133, resulting in his driver’s licence being immediately disqualified for 13 months, and being fined $817.

The man was slapped with a further $240 fine for not wearing a helmet.

Victorian law stipulates that e-scooter riders caught with a blood alcohol limit over 0.05 can lose their driver’s licence with the penalties the same as if they were in charge of a car.

Victoria Police Superintendent John Fitzpatrick of the Road Policing Operations and Investigations Division said the incident in the CBD should serve as a lesson to all e-scooter riders “that you are not immune from the drink driving laws applicable to other motorists”.

“Alarmingly, this rider was also caught not wearing a helmet – he was lucky to not be seriously injured given he was riding while impaired,” he said.

“Nobody should be getting behind the wheel of any vehicle if they’ve been drinking and over the limit – there are so many alternative transport options available in the CBD to ensure you make it home safely.”

“We will continue to be on the lookout for behaviour that puts other road users at risk.”

Police are currently running Operation Halo which addresses behaviour that leads to trauma among the vulnerable road users.

This includes vehicles blocking bike lanes and failing to give way at pedestrian crossings, as well as distraction offences, speed, and impaired driving.

Operation Halo, which continues through to September, is being conducted in areas of high traffic where lots of people are walking and riding – in Melbourne, Yarra, Port Phillip, Merri-bek, Stonnington and Boroondara. •

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