You may think that you can drink while driving a boat, but state boating under the influence laws apply. BUI brings more danger than you think. According to the Insurance Information Institute alcohol contributes to 26% of all boating fatalities. BUI charges may carry severe penalties because of the possible dangers to you and others. It’s important to know the potential penalties. You also want to know how you can fight BUI charges, and how an attorney can help. Will go through all this information so you can better understand BUI charges.
What Is a BUI?
Boating under the influence or for to operating a boat or personal watercraft while using alcohol or any other drugs. A jet ski, canoes, and inflatable rafts count as personal watercrafts. In Rhode Island, the legal limit for blood alcohol level in adults is .08 and .02 in minors. Law-enforcement agents may pull someone over if the person seems under the influence. These agencies may set up BUI you are checkpoints in the water to catch people as well. They function just like DUI checkpoint you may see on the road. If the driver is found to be over the legal limit, they may face BUI charges. A person under the influence of illegal drugs may face stiffer penalties.
What Are Some Consequences of a BUI Conviction?
A BUI conviction might leave you with a simple fine and license suspension if it’s your first offense and you have a low BAC. The penalties go up from there and may include a misdemeanor charge, which carries with it community service and or chill time along with fine. You also face a longer license suspension. Multiple offenses carry longer potential jail times and license suspensions as well as heftier fines. A judge me also force you to receive substance-abuse treatment. BUI charges may affect your overall driving record not just your boating record. Your driver’s license could get suspended, and your car insurance could skyrocket. You also might need to equip your car with an ignition interlock for a year or even the rest of your life in severe cases. An ignition interlock system forces the driver to take a breathalyzer test before the ignition works.
BUI with Injuries or Death
If you’re convicted of you are charged that caused serious bodily injury or death you’re looking at a felony. A felony your record follows you for life. You may have a hard time finding a job, and you lose your right to vote. You may face a large fine of up to $5500, 3 to 5 years in jail, and a license suspension of three years. You’re required to finish substance abuse treatment. You may also face a civil suit from the injured party. You may have to pay them thousands to millions of dollars depending on what happened, and the size of your assets.
How Can You Fight BUI Charges?
You have a few options when it comes to fighting BUI charges. Make sure you stay quiet when law enforcement pulls you over. Anything you say could make things worse, and the prosecution might use it in court. Respond to the officers politely and calmly at all times. You should ask them why you were pulled over if they don’t tell you. This information may help you fight the BUI charges. The most common ways to fight DUI charges include proving you weren’t under the influence or you were stopped illegally. A strong attorney will make one of these defenses or another based on your specific case.
How a Lawyer Can Help
A good lawyer will use the information you provide to put together a strong case. If they feel like you have grounds to fight The charges, they’ll work to prove your innocence. The lawyer’s knowledge of the BUI laws allows them to work every angle to help you. If it’s clear you don’t have a case a lawyer can still help. They can work with the prosecution to lessen the charges in a plea deal. A lawyer can ensure you face the least amount of possible consequences. They may use their relationship with the prosecution, or your clean record as leverage for a better deal.
Drinking while boating may seem enticing and fun. You want to partake in the festivities with your friends and family. It’s important you realize the potential consequences of drinking too much. You don’t want to end up behind bars, or in the middle of a civil suit. It’s important to find a talent lawyer if you’re brought up on BUI charges. Your lawyer will do everything in their power to help you fight the charges and get a better deal. Always drink in moderation and make sure someone else drives if you feel like you’ve had too much to drink.