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What every Floridian should know about intoxicated boating

When people talk about the problem of drunk driving, most associate the matter with cars. Even so, the law extends beyond operating vehicles while intoxicated on land. Anyone steering a boat while inebriated is committing a similar crime.

Understanding the seriousness of this matter should reduce the number of watery tragedies. Not wanting to experience a seafaring DUI is an extra incentive.

Frequency of boating under the influence

The United States Coast Guard claims alcohol is a primary cause of boating accidents. The widespread popularity of party boats adds to this problem in the Sunshine State. Year-round warmth means people are imbibing on seafaring vessels at all times of the year.

Consequences of boating under the influence

Water police are always on the lookout for captains who are indulging. Know what to do if one pulls you over. There are different punishments for boating while drunk in each state. In Florida, your first conviction could result in a fine between $500 and $1,000. You might also wind up facing half a year behind bars. Expect harsher terms if your blood alcohol level exceeds .15%.

The end of boating under the influence

Instead of lugging alcohol aboard, bring sodas, sun teas, lemonades and iced coffees in the cooler. If you do imbibe, consume no more than one drink per hour. Allow a sober individual to take over should you become inebriated.

Operating boats while liquored up is always dangerous. Keep this in mind every time you take your craft for a spin.