What is Reckless Driving in Oklahoma?

reckless driving in OklahomaReckless driving in Oklahoma is defined as driving carelessly or wantonly and without regard for the safety of persons or property around you, or in violation of the basic or posted speed laws of the state. Okla. Stat. tit. 47 §§ 11-901, 11-801

Driving Laws in Tulsa

Basic speed laws imply reasonable and prudent behavior on the part of the driver, giving due consideration to the traffic, surface, and other conditions.

Posted speed limits are in place for the safety of all persons and property on the roadway. Speeds greatly in excess of posted speed limits may be a basis for a charge of reckless driving.

The law uses the terms carelessly and wantonly. Carelessly implies a lack of regard.  Wantonly implies a clear disregard for the safety of others.

Oklahoma law requires a driver to devote his or her full attention to driving. Cell phones, eating, and applying makeup can all result in distracted driving.

So, when does distracted driving cross over into reckless driving?

Here are the elements of reckless driving in Oklahoma. A Tulsa County prosecutor must prove each element beyond a reasonable doubt in order to obtain a conviction.

  • driving
  • a motor vehicle
  • in a careless or wanton manner;
  • and in disregard for the safety or persons or property,
  • or in violation of speed limits,
  • or exceeded a speed that a reasonable and prudent person would have considered to be reasonable given the road and traffic conditions,
  • or drove at an excessive speed that a reasonable and prudent person would have considered to be reasonable and proper in order to stop in the clear distance ahead.

OUJI-CR 6-32

Excessive speed alone can secure a conviction if the other elements are met.

Driving under the influence of any intoxicant— including prescribed or over-the-counter medications taken that impair your ability to drive—can also mean a conviction,.

The following could all be examples of reckless driving depending on the severity of the behavior and upon traffic conditions:

  • excessive speed;
  • intoxication;
  • forcing others off the road;
  • tailgating;
  • running a stop sign or a red light;
  • weaving in and out of lanes; or
  • cutting in front of another car and applying your brakes (if done in a manner that is wanton or careless).

Penalties for Reckless Driving

The crime is a misdemeanor. The first conviction of reckless driving is punishable by 5 to 90 days of jail time, or a fine between $100 and $500, or both.

Penalties increase with subsequent convictions.

Free Consultation: Tulsa Traffic Ticket Attorney

If you are being charged with reckless driving in Oklahoma, it is important that you hire an experienced Tulsa traffic ticket attorney.

Only a local attorney will know the court system and judges in the area. Do not delay. Our initial consultation is free.

Call Wirth Law Office – Tulsa at 918-879-1681 or toll free at 1-888-Wirth-Law (1-888-947-8452). You can also submit the question form at the top right of this page.

We pride ourselves on providing our clients with excellent representation at reasonable prices.

"Make law easy!"