Skip to main content

Hundreds of Oktoberfest-goers lose license after drunken e-scooter rides

Locals and tourists gathered in Munich, Germany, to sing and drink beer learned the hard way that riding an e-scooter is not an acceptable alternative to driving a car while drunk. Police checkpoints set up around the city’s 16-day-long Oktoberfest celebrations caught hundreds of intoxicated motorists squiggling their way down a street or a sidewalk.

Approximately 6.3 million people went to Oktoberfest in 2019. Controlling such a big crowd is difficult in any situation, but Munich’s police department has it down to a science. They rely on undercover officers to stop brawls before they get bloody, and use video surveillance to catch pickpockets before they get away. The biggest problem officers encountered were e-scooters, according to German newspaper Deutsche Welle. They’re all over the place in Munich, as they are in most big German cities, so they were banned from entering the Oktoberfest beer gardens due to safety concerns. Someone carrying six steins of lager might not see one in an aisle and trip; alternatively, someone could also trip over it after drinking the six aforementioned steins.

Outside of the festival, 414 people were caught riding e-scooters drunk, and 254 of them lost their driver’s license because of it. Marcus da Gloria Martins, a spokesman for Munich’s police department, told Deutsche Welle many of the city’s residents see the e-scooters as a lifestyle product or a toy, and use them without realizing an offense committed on two wheels can end up their driving record. The best way to get home from Oktoberfest is to walk, take a subway, or hail a cab.

Interestingly, the number of drunk e-scooter riders apprehended suggests many beer drinkers assumed riding home on two wheels was better than driving home on four. To add context, 360 motorists were caught driving a car drunk in Munich during Oktoberfest, and 214 of them had their license taken away on the spot.

The story is similar in the United States, though the finer points vary from state to state. Broadly speaking, motorists — whether they’re on two, three, or four wheels — risk a DUI conviction if they operate a motor vehicle drunk on a public road. The law doesn’t make a distinction between riding a scooter (or a motorcycle) and driving a car. If you have eight beers, hop on a Lime, and ride home on the sidewalk, you’ve just broken it.

Editors' Recommendations

Ronan Glon
Ronan Glon is an American automotive and tech journalist based in southern France. As a long-time contributor to Digital…
Best electric car charger deals: $100 off home charging stations
The handle of the Grizzl-E EV charger plugged into a vehicle.

A few years ago, electric vehicles were pretty rare or cost a fortune, but with more and more of the larger car brands getting into the game, there are a lot of excellent and even budget-friendly choices nowadays. That said, the electrical network for charging your cars might not be that widespread, so instead you'll have to rely on charging your car at home. Luckily, there are a lot of excellent car chargers at a discount, so if you've just bought an EV or want to upgrade your current charging solution, be sure to check out our favorite deals below.
Shockflo EV charger — $205, was $220

This EV charger by Shockflo is a Level 2 EV charger, which offers six times faster charging than a standard charger. It delivers 24 miles with just one hour of charging, and it can act as a mobile charger you can throw in the trunk or be mounted to a wall. It has an LCD display with useful information like charging rate, voltage, and charging time, as well as LED indicator lights that lets you know charging progress and errors.

Read more
Mercedes-Benz EQG: range, price, release date, and more
Concept image of the larger electric G-Wagon

The G-Class is going electric. We already knew that Mercedes-Benz was working on an electric, small-size G-Wagon, but it looks like the company is also working on a larger G-Class SUV, in the form of the EQG. In fact, Mercedes has gone as far as to show off a concept version of the off-roader.

While there's much we don't know about what will become the production model of the EQG, Mercedes has also shared a lot about it. Curious about whether the Mercedes-Benz EQG could be the EV for you? Here's everything we know so far.
Fear not -- the EQG will retain many of the design aspects of the G-Class that you already know and love but with a modern face-lift. The EQG will keep the boxy design that gives the G-Class a classic look but with some additional modern styling, at least if the concept version is anything to go by.

Read more
Rivian R2 vs. Kia EV9: battle of affordable electric SUVs
Kia EV9 GT-Line Three Quarters

The long-awaited Rivian R2 has finally been announced, and it's an excellent option for those who want an electric SUV that doesn't completely break the bank. Sure, the R2 isn't cheap -- but it's a whole lot cheaper than most other EVs out there, especially when it comes to SUVs. But Rivian isn't the only company trying to tackle the problem of the budget electric SUV. The Kia EV9 is finally available, and it too offers a modern design and a range of helpful features.

Given the fact that the Rivian R2 and Kia EV9 are two electric SUVs in a similar price range, you might be wondering which is better for your needs. That's why we put the Rivian R2 and the Kia EV9 head-to-head.
Both the Rivian R2 and the Kia EV9 are actual SUVs -- not crossovers pretending to be SUVs, like plenty of other EVs out there. The two vehicles offer big, boxy designs and plenty of interior space, making them excellent options for families or those who need that extra storage.

Read more