One Ontario resident has learned the hard way that impaired driving laws don’t apply exclusively to people behind the wheel of a car, despite what some may think.
Huron OPP officers responded to a complaint that someone was driving a motorized mobility scooter around the town of Goderich, Ontario, under the influence on Saturday evening. After arriving at the scene, the cops did indeed decide to bust the perpetrator, who, one can assume, was not making a very speedy getaway.
As a result, an unnamed 56-year-old was charged with Impaired Operation and Impaired Operation Over 80, which the public may not realize applies to all different types of vehicles and vessels, not just the standard automobile.
#HuronOPP investigated a complaint of an impaired operator of a mobility scooter on January 7th in @GoderichDwntown. A 56 yr-old Goderich resident has been charged with Impaired Operation and Impaired Operation Over 80. Court pending. #drivesober #OPP #ArriveAlive ^cs. pic.twitter.com/cIO2ZDOUxe
— OPP West Region (@OPP_WR) January 9, 2023
In the wake of the incident, the force posted a photo of the scooter in question — tipped over on the ground — to Twitter as a warning to Ontarians this week.
Unfortunately for them, the reaction has appeared to be largely in the vein of “wtf, why?” with people tweeting replies such as “seriously?” and calling the force a bunch of “ableist assh*les” who should have been trying to help the individual get home over anything else.
Thank you to the brave and courageous police officers for protecting us from this crazy maniac!!!!
— james north (@jamesno81040296) January 9, 2023
Surprisingly, there have been a number of cases in which people in the province have been charged with operating devices such as canoes, which, like rafts, kayaks, and even floaties, can be considered vessels on the water.
When it comes to the roads, a motor vehicle — which one must be sober to operate — is defined in the Criminal Code of Canada as “a vehicle that is drawn, propelled or driven by any means other than muscular power, but does not include railway equipment.
The Government of Ontario deems it “an automobile, motorcycle, motor-assisted bicycle and any other vehicle propelled or driven other than by muscular power.”