Reckless driving isn’t just a regular civil infraction like a parking ticket. It’s a lot more serious than that – and it could result in you losing your license. The penalties change if someone is injured, so it’s incredibly important to work with a Milwaukee reckless driving lawyer if you’re charged with any crime that involves being behind the wheel.
Reckless Driving in Wisconsin
In May, 2014, 23-year-old Bobby Thongchamlensouk raced through an I-94 construction zone at 119 miles per hour. There were workers present when he zipped through on his Yamaha motorcycle. Police chased him, but they just couldn’t catch up until he crashed on an exit ramp.
But that’s one of the more extreme cases of reckless driving Wisconsin has seen. There are several on-the-road behaviors that actually count as reckless driving in Milwaukee.
3 On-the-Road Behaviors that Can Constitute Reckless Driving in Wisconsin
There are a lot of behaviors that could constitute reckless driving in Wisconsin. Often, reckless driving hinges upon negligence that puts someone – anyone – in danger. That means any time you’re not giving the road your full attention, or if you’re purposely doing something that’s risky (like the motorcyclist who sped through a construction zone with workers present), you could be charged with reckless driving in the state of Wisconsin.
1. Texting and driving. Texting and driving is against the law for any Wisconsin driver, and if someone is endangered, injured or killed as a result, you can face penalties that include jail time.
2. Passing on a double-yellow or otherwise ignoring basic safety laws. Whether you don’t have time to stay behind a slow-moving car or you’re driving double the speed limit on an empty road, you could easily be charged with reckless driving. Even if you don’t feel that you put anyone at risk and if nobody was harmed, you can end up with a charge and a conviction that stays with you for life.
3. Racing your friends. While it sounds like a lot of fun, you can’t race your friends in a parking lot, on a public road (even if it’s empty) or anywhere else that isn’t specifically designated for racing. You could face driver’s license suspension for up to two years and be hit with a reckless driving charge that will never go away.
It’s All About Safety
I know it seems like everything counts as reckless driving in Wisconsin (as someone who may or may not have done donuts in parking lots 15 or 20 years ago, I really do understand where you’re coming from). The truth is, it does. If you’re doing something that could put another person’s safety in jeopardy, you can be charged, tried and convicted.
Just be careful. Try to drive like your grandma is in the passenger seat and you’ll be fine (unless this is your grandma).
Attorney Carlos A. Gamino