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.
Plucked from the obscurity of his London commute back in the mid-Nineties to live in Bath and edit bike mags our man made the jump to the interweb back in 2006 as launch editor of a large cycling website somewhat confusingly named after a piece of navigational equipment. He came up with the idea for road.cc mainly to avoid being told what to do… Oh dear, issues there then. Tony tries to ride his bike every day and if he doesn't he gets grumpy, he likes carbon, but owns steel, and wants titanium. When not on his bike or eating cake Tony spends his time looking for new ways to annoy the road.cc team. He's remarkably good at it.