03-18-2009, 07:49 AM #1
BWI no longer a slap on the wrist for drunk boaters
BWI laws are no longer a slap on the wrist for drunk boaters
Lake Havasu in Arizona is a Spring Break mecca. Warm weather, a great boating location, and lots of alcohol flowing. As much fun as Spring Break in Havasu can be, it can be equally deadly when inebriated party goers get behind the helm of a boat.
Operating a boat while intoxicated is not a slap on the wrist. Laws that apply to boating under the influence mirror the laws involved with driving a car under the influence.
According to the United States Coast Guard, alcohol is even more hazardous on the water than on land. The marine environment – motion, vibration, engine noise, sun, wind and spray – accelerates a drinker's impairment. These stressors cause fatigue that makes a boat operator's coordination, judgment and reaction time decline even faster when using alcohol.
If you are pulled over in your boat on suspicion of intoxication, you will be asked to perform a variety of field sobriety tests, just like on the road, and you can imagine how much harder these are on a rocking boat. After that, you will be asked to submit to a chemical test, like a breathalyzer, to determine your blood alcohol level.
Now, there are varying opinions on whether or not you should agree to these tests, however, according to BoatingUnderTheInfluence.org, you should be aware of the law of implied consent. When you first get your driver's license and every renewal thereafter, you are agreeing to be tested for chemicals if you are suspected of driving or boating under the influence. Therefore, if you refuse the test, your license will automatically be revoked because of your failure to comply.
You should also be aware of the term known as "presumption of guilt". This means that if you are found to have a blood alcohol content of .08% or more, you are presumed guilty of boating under the influence and you will be arrested.
The United States Coast Guard reports that if arrested, you will encounter huge fines, possible jail time, community service, etc. The specific penalties vary from state to state and depending on the situation in which you were arrested. The bottom line is that there is a time and place to party on Spring Break. Behind the helm of a boat is not one of them.
03-18-2009, 08:45 AM #2
- Join Date
- Aug 2006
I was just at Havasu! the amount of red bull and vodka being loaded onto boats was insane Heck Red Bull had a huge PBY sea plane that would land and hand out free cans , I only saw the sheriff twice and I was told by the lifeguard they cut the manpower from 4 boats down to two due to the budget .
the other Arizona lakes aren't tolerating BUI either Lake pleasant for example doesn't need a reason ( probable cause)to pull you over because they use a saturation tactic ( they pull everyone over )
and they carry breathalizers but if they don't get you there they will get you one the one way in DUI roadblock
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