Open Container Laws
Under Oklahoma statute, it is illegal for a vehicle operator to knowingly transport an open container of alcohol or low point beer in a vehicle. The statute also prohibits a passenger from possessing any alcohol or low point beer in a vehicle that is moving.
The law prohibits any alcohol with a broken seal—including beer, wine and liquor—from being in most vehicles—car, truck or commercial. There are exceptions for limousines and buses providing the alcohol or low point beer is not in the immediate possession of the driver and that the driver has not consumed any alcohol or low point beer.
Where Can the Container Be Located?
You can have a container in your vehicle in the following places— essentially, anywhere in or on the vehicle that the driver does not have access to while the driving:
- The trunk
- Rear compartment
- Any outside compartment
What is Required for a Conviction?
In order to convict you, the state must show that the vehicle was moving and that it was on a public highway, street, or alley. Under this definition, you cannot be convicted of Transporting an Open Container (also commonly referred to as TOC) sitting in a private parking lot drinking your beer. The statute does not require an amount so arguably, any quantity including just one drop, is sufficient to support the charge.
The statute prohibits the driver and the passenger so both can be charged with transporting open container.
Penalties for Open Container Transportation
If you knowingly transport an open container of alcohol, you can be charged with a misdemeanor. If convicted, you could face a maximum $500 fine and up to six months in the county jail. Also, if convicted, you will be assessed an additional $100 trauma care fee on top of any fine or court costs imposed.