Driver Intoxicated

A person is guilty of the offence of being an intoxicated driver if they either: drive, ride or are in charge of either a vehicle or an animal on a road, whilst they are under the influence of alcohol.

For the purposes of this section, animals include horses, cattle and sheep. In addition, whilst other provisions specify that a motor vehicle in required to for an offence to be committed, this provision only requires that a vehicle is involved. The definition is then extended to include bicycles, or animal-drawn vehicles.

This section requires a discretionary judgment as to whether or not a person is intoxicated. If you have been arrested under this offence, you are entitled to be examined by a doctor or authorised nurse if you request an examination.

The maximum penalty for this charge depends on whether a person is a first or a repeat offender. In either case, the starting point at sentencing would be for the Court to record a conviction, impose a fine and disqualify your licence for three years, for a first offence and five years for a second offence. For both a first and a repeat offence, the Court may also impose a period of imprisonment up to six months.


In NSW, traffic offences are treated seriously. Therefore, it is important to get competent legal advice as early as possible, whether you have received a penalty notice, had your licence suspended or been charged with a serious offence. Our lawyers are highly experienced and understand the difficulties you face without a licence. We can guide you through the process while dealing with the various authorities related to your matter.


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