Boating Under the Influence causes Coast Guard to rescue three boaters in Charleston Harbor

7th Coast Guard District NewsCHARLESTON, S.C. – A Coast Guard boatcrew from Station Charleston rescued three people in the Charleston Harbor after a 21-foot recreational boat struck a submerged cable marker Sunday.

Search and rescue controllers at Coast Guard Sector Charleston were notified of the distress Sunday at 2:38 a.m., by the operator the recreational boat via VHF-FM Channel 16, the international maritime distress frequency.

A Station Charleston response boatcrew immediately launched aboard a 25-foot Response Boat-Small. When the boatcrew arrived on scene, all three passengers were brought aboard the rescue boat and transported ashore to awaiting medical personnel.

Two of the patients sustained injuries including a broken arm and a headwound and were transferred to the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston. Charleston County Sheriff’s Office and the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources conducted interviews and arrested the operator for boating under the influence of alcohol.

MUSC reports both patients are in stable condition.

Boating under the influence is dangerous and illegal. Boating under the influence is still the leading contributing factor in fatal boating accidents, with 17 percent of boating fatalities a direct result of alcohol or drug use. Penalties can include fine, imprisonment, impoundment of your boat, loss of boating privileges and even loss of driving privileges.

If you boat under the influence:

  • Your voyage will be terminated
  • Your boat may be impounded, and
  • You may be arrested.

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