Oklahoma generally prohibits consuming alcohol as well as possessing and transporting open containers of alcohol in motor vehicles, with a few exceptions. This article provides an overview of Oklahoma’s open container law, related laws, exceptions, and the penalties for violations.
It’s unlawful for a driver to knowingly transport or for a passenger to possess any “intoxicating beverage or low-point beer” that is opened or has the original seal removed in any moving vehicle on a public highway, street, or alley.
Intoxicating beverage. An “intoxicating beverage” is any beverage containing more than 3.2% of alcohol by weight and all mixed beverage coolers no matter what percent of alcohol content.
Low-point beer. A “low-point beer” means all beverages that contain more than .5% of alcohol by volume and not more than 3.2% of alcohol by weight, including beer and cereal malt beverages.
A person who violates the open container law commits a misdemeanor, punishable by a maximum fine of $500 and/or up to six months in a county jail. In addition, the court will impose a special assessment of $100 (for the Trauma Care Assistance Revolving Fund).
Trunk and outside compartments. An open intoxicating beverage or low-point beer can lawfully be kept in:
Buses and limousines. A passenger can lawfully possess an open intoxicating beverage or low-point beer in the passenger area of a bus and limousine.
A bus is defined as a vehicle that is chartered for transportation of persons for hire and doesn’t include a school bus that transports children or a vehicle operating within a city or town on a scheduled route.
A limousine means a “chauffeur-driven” motor vehicle used for the transportation of persons for compensation and doesn’t include a bus or taxicab.
However, it is unlawful for:
If the driver of a bus or limousine transports minors who are consuming or are in possession of alcohol, it’s a misdemeanor offense. For a first conviction, the maximum fine is $500. For a second conviction, the driver will be fined and subject to a mandatory revocation of driving privileges.
The owner of a bus or limousine who violates this restriction also commits a misdemeanor offense. The maximum fine is $500 for a first conviction. For a second conviction, the owner will be fined and must forfeit for one year any government-issued license authorizing the owner to operate a hired bus or limousine service.
In addition to the prohibition against possessing and transporting alcohol in vehicles, Oklahoma’s public intoxication law prohibits consuming alcohol in vehicles. It is unlawful for a person to drink or otherwise consume any intoxicating liquor in any public place, passenger coach, streetcar, or any other vehicle used for the transportation of passengers.
A person who violates the public intoxication law commits a misdemeanor, punishable by a fine of $10 to $100 and/or jail for five to 30 days.