Boating Under the Influence (BUI)

CLEVELAND – In recognition of the fifth day of National Safe Boating Week, the Ninth Coast Guard District would like to remind boaters to never boat under the influence of alcohol.

Boating under the influence is just as deadly as drinking and driving a motor vehicle. In fact, a boat operator is likely to become impaired more quickly than a driver, drink for drink.

? Alcohol affects judgment, vision, balance and coordination.

? 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.

? Alcohol can cause an inner ear disturbance that can make it impossible for a person who falls into the water to distinguish up from down.

? The penalties for BUI can include large fines, revocation of operator privileges and serious jail terms.

? Alcohol accounts for nearly one-third of all recreational boating fatalities.

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