According to experienced DWI lawyers, open container violations will result in small to moderate fines. However, there are times in which it may lead to much steeper consequences. So it’s important that you know how to avoid this offense. Here are a few things that can make you vulnerable to an open container violation.
Drinking Alcohol in Public Places
You’re very likely to receive an open container violation if you fail to keep your bottles and cans sealed. This is an easy mistake to make if you’re taking the bottle from a friend’s home after a social gathering. Bottles that are not sealed or in a bag may be viewed negatively by the police.
Ignoring Established Boundaries
If you fail to pay attention to established boundaries, then you may receive a violation. In certain instances, there are specific areas in which people are permitted to drink. In fact, there are often signs posted that specify where you’re allowed to carry open containers of alcohol in public places. For example, while you may not be allowed to drink on public sidewalks, you may be permitted to drink on a specific area of the sidewalk if you’re a patron of a bar or sidewalk café.
Drinking and Driving
It’s important to keep in mind that drinking and driving makes you more vulnerable to receiving an open container violation in Harris County. This is because your container will be open while you drive. Even if the passenger has a bottle of beer, if it’s in a place where you could easily reach it, you could be charged.
Storing Empty Cans or Bottles
There are a lot of drivers who are in the habit of not regularly cleaning or organizing their vehicle. Unfortunately, this can make a huge impact on your life if you are ever pulled over. You can possibly be cited for all of your empty cans and bottles. Even if the alcohol was consumed by someone else, a very long time ago you may still be held responsible for it. In fact, even if the container has only a small amount of alcohol, it will be viewed as an open container. This is why it’s often recommended that drivers rinse out their empty bottles and cans if they are carrying them in their vehicles.
Engaging in Disruptive or Dangerous or Behavior
Another way in which you may make yourself vulnerable to an open container violation is by acting disorderly. This can draw attention to your open container. This is especially the case if you are in an area that has laws against public consumption. The officers’ main concern is to ensure the safety of the public.
Whether you’re intoxicated or not, drinking alcohol while driving is extremely dangerous. And this is why Texas takes its laws on DWI so seriously. An open container violation can sometimes lead to serious consequences. As you can see, there are various ways in which you can make yourself vulnerable to an open container violation. This is why it’s very important to pay attention to the local laws.