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Alcohol and Boating

Think Before You Drink

Almost half of all boating accidents involve alcohol. That should be reason enough to leave alcohol consumption for when you are safely ashore with no plans to travel.

Operating a boat while intoxicated is a federal offense, subject to a $1,000 fine. In addition, criminal penalties are as high as $5,000, and may even include jail time. State Boating Under the Influence (BUI) Laws are becoming more stringent too. In most states, the standards for determining whether an individual is intoxicated matches its state highway laws for operating a vehicle. Please consider:

  • In most states it is illegal to operate a boat with a blood alcohol content of .08% or greater.
  • Some states will suspend your boating license or privilege.
  • In some states your driving record could be affected.
  • Your boat could be seized or sold at auction.