We all know that it is illegal to drive a moving vehicle while intoxicated, but did you know that, in Michigan, it is also illegal to be a mere passenger on a train while intoxicated? Act 68 of the Michigan Compiled Laws was enacted in 1913, but was never repealed – presumably because it is probably more costly to remove it than to just leave it on the books. Specifically, MCL 436.201 states “No person shall while in an offensive state of intoxication enter or be on or remain upon any railway train or interurban car as a passenger.” This law further gives the train conductor the authority to arrest the individual who violates this law. Specifically, the conductor “shall have the same power and authority as any peace officer, including the power to summon assistance.” The conductor further has the power to confiscate the offending liquor, but must provide the drunken person with a receipt for the liquor (which has now been put in the hands of the “station agent”). And now for my favorite part – the drunken person can actually return to this same station agent and provide proof of his receipt, so he can get his liquor back! Now, there is one exception. It is perfectly legal to drink alcohol in a train compartment where liquor is lawfully sold – although I don’t know how much this will help you once you get back to your seat (which I assume is not in the drinking compartment). In my research of this law, I was unable to ascertain the last time someone was actually convicted of such behavior, however, this law is still in existence . Therefore, in order to avoid the possibility of a misdemeanor punishable by a maximum penalty of $100 and 90 days in jail, it would be best to avoid drinking on trains altogether!
If you have questions on a law in Michigan call Ambrose Law Group at (248) 624-5500 for free consultations