Germany: Drunk cyclist gets 15 year cycling ban… he's not allowed to skateboard either

Drink driving laws apply to cyclists even if they don't have a driving licence

by Tony Farrelly   November 30, 2009 news

A German student who was breathalyzed at over three time the German limit for alcohol has been banned from using a bicycle, skateboard or any other licence-free vehicle on the public roads, for 15 years. Christopher-Felix Hahn was coming home from a party in Gießen in Hesse in the small hours and although he says he did not feel unduly impaired he did attract the attention of the local police who breathalyzed him.

Hahn paid the subsequent €500 fine and thought that was the end of the matter. In Germany cyclists are subject to the same traffic and drink driving laws as everyone else: German cyclists and and do lose their driving licences for cycling while under the influence. Hahn though did not have a driver's licence and thought that he would merely be barred from applying for one until his record cleared.

However his blood alcohol count was over 0.16 per cent which meant that it had to be reported to the local driver licensing bureau – they required that he undergo a medical and psychological evaluation costing another €500. Depending on which report your read, Hahn either ignored the letter or refused to pay – it was too much money and he had no plans to take out a driver's licence. The net result was the same a ban on using any licence free or leg powered vehicle on the public roads… he can ride a horse though, unfortunately Mr Hahn is allergic to horse hair.

The authorities went on to explain that the earliest this ruling could be revoked was in 15 years time and until then if he wanted to ride a bike he would have to pay €25 every time. There are no reports on wheather Mr Hahn who is studying theatre science plans to emigrate.

6 user comments

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Thanks to OldRidgeback for another good spot!

Tony Farrelly's picture

posted by Tony Farrelly [4178 posts]
30th November 2009 - 17:11


No problem Tony - not sure if this guy can use a micro scooter, as they qualify as leg-powered. Not sure if he's even allowed to walk for that matter.
When I get more stories like this (and I will), I'll pass them on.


posted by OldRidgeback [2466 posts]
1st December 2009 - 10:30


How will they police it if he does ride a bike (sober and without attracting undue attention)?

As far as I'm aware the German Police don't stop you at random and demand to see your papers any more.

posted by wild man [290 posts]
1st December 2009 - 18:06


If they know him by sight, they'll stop him.


posted by OldRidgeback [2466 posts]
1st December 2009 - 23:44


That's nuts!

G-bitch's picture

posted by G-bitch [315 posts]
2nd December 2009 - 12:46


But presumably he can still MTB, right? Phew…


posted by Anthony_r [2 posts]
2nd December 2009 - 19:54