Kentucky's Reckless Driving Laws and Penalties

Read about Kentucky’s reckless driving laws and the consequences of a conviction.

In Kentucky, driving recklessly can lead to fines and license suspension. This article explains how Kentucky defines reckless driving and the specific penalties you'll face for a conviction.

What Is Considered "Reckless Driving" in Kentucky?

Kentucky's "reckless driving" law requires all motorists to drive "in a careful manner, with regard for the safety and convenience of pedestrians and other vehicles upon the highway." The statute also prohibits purposefully driving "in such a manner as to injure the highway." (Ky. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 189.290.)

Kentucky's Reckless Driving Penalties

Motorists convicted of reckless driving in Kentucky face $20 to $100 in fines. For a third reckless driving conviction within a 12-month period, the motorist's license will be revoked for six months.

A reckless driving conviction will also add four points to the motorist's driving record. Accumulating 12 or more points within a two-year period can lead to license suspension.

Reckless Driving and DUI Charges ("Wet Reckless") in Kentucky

In some states, it's possible for a driver who's charged with driving under the influence (DUI) to "plea bargain" for a lesser charge. When a DUI is plea-bargained down to a reckless driving charge, it's sometimes called a "wet reckless."

Kentucky law generally prohibits prosecutors from reducing a DUI to a lesser charge when the driver either refused chemical testing or had a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08% or more (.02% or more for drivers under age 21). In DUI cases that don't involve refusal or excessive BAC, plea bargaining is allowed.

Talk to a Kentucky Defense Attorney

The facts of every case are different. If you've been arrested for or charged with reckless driving, get in contact with an experienced defense attorney. A qualified attorney can explain how the law applies to the facts of your case and help you decide on how best to handle your situation.

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