Karns Law Group
free initial consultation
888-KARNS-LAW | 401-239-1085

Boating Under the Influence

While most people know that there are penalties and punishments for those found driving under the influence, many do not realize that similar rules also apply to those operating a watercraft in Rhode Island. Boating under the influence, or BUI, can cause serious injuries or fatalities and can carry significant consequences.

According to the Alcohol Boating Safety Act, drivers of any watercraft cannot have a blood alcohol level of more than 0.08 percent. This is the same limit that is used by state officers to determine intoxication for DUI and DWI citations.

The Act goes on to say that the penalties given will depend on the blood alcohol concentration. For example, consequences may include community service, a required safety course and a fine for the first offense when the operator’s BAC is between 0.08 percent and 0.1 percent. A first offense with a blood alcohol level between 0.1 to 0.15 percent can have the same consequences, a higher fine and the potential for a prison sentence of as long as one year. The driver also loses the right to operate any watercrafts for three to six months. Fines and penalties increase as the BAC and number of offenses increase.

The U.S. Coast Guard has stated that driving a boat while under the influence is as dangerous as operating a car in the same condition and, in some instances, may actually be more risky. Impairment can also happen faster because factors like engine vibrations, wind and spraying water can cause fatigue and affect reaction time. Officials have reported that around one third of fatalities from recreational boating incidents involve alcohol.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
Request A Free Consultation Email Our Firm Now

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close

Privacy Policy

Our Offices

Middletown Office
6 Valley Road
Middletown, RI 02842

Phone: 401-239-1085
Fax: 401-846-5999
Middletown Law Office Map

Wakefield Office
231 Old Tower Hill Road Suite 208
Wakefield, RI 02879

Phone: 401-239-1085
Wakefield Law Office Map

Providence Office
101 Dyer Street, Suite 3B
Providence, RI 02903

Phone: 401-239-1085
Providence Law Office Map