Jet Skiing while Intoxicated
Jet skis are a fun and exciting way to see your local lake or beach. Likewise, many people enjoy having a few drinks while out by the water, which can be a great way to unwind and enjoy a relaxing day. Operating a jet ski or other personal watercraft while intoxicated, however, can be a dangerous combination for you and others.
Before drinking and driving or operating any kind of vehicle, it is important to know the laws for your state. Following the law on the water is enforced just as strictly as on the road, and similar DUI charges apply if you are found to be operating a jet ski while intoxicated. If you have been arrested for Boating While Intoxicated, contact Rhode Island DUI lawyer Matthew Marin today at 401-287-4384.
Drinking While Boating and Rhode Island Law
Under Rhode Island law, you are allowed to have open containers on boats and other watercraft, and drinking on the water is not altogether illegal. However, if you are found to be drinking while jet skiing and are under 21, or are over 21 but are past the legal limit of .08 blood alcohol content (BAC), you are breaking the law. If you have been arrested on Boating While Intoxicated charges, you face the following penalties:
BAC less than .10:
- Suspension of operating watercraft for up to 45 days
- Fines up to $250
- Up to 60 hours community service
- Possible enrollment in a boating safety course
BAC of .10 or more:
- Suspension of operating watercraft for up to 6 months
- Fines up to $500
- Up to 60 hours of community service
- Enrollment in a boating safety course
- Up to 1 year in prison
In addition to any fines described above, a boating safety fine of $500 is required for all offenders charged with Boating While Intoxicated.
Consequences of Boating While Intoxicated
According to national statistics, alcohol is involved in one-third of all boating fatalities each year. Furthermore, watercraft fatalities are 10 times more likely when the operator has a BAC of .10 than when they are sober.
A BWI is a serious charge that can affect your personal and professional life even years later. If you have been charged with a BWI for operating a jet ski or any other watercraft while drinking, contact a DUI defense lawyer immediately. A good DUI attorney knows how to look for weaknesses in the evidence brought against you and can help you defend your rights in a court of law. Contact experienced Rhode Island DUI defense lawyer Matthew Marin today at 401-287-4384.