Zero tolerance for boating under the influence

  • Written by Woodinville Weekly Staff

OLYMPIA — This summer Washington law enforcement officers will be enforcing boating under the influence (BUI) laws on the state’s waterways.

The campaign focuses on preventing accidents, injuries and deaths resulting from people abusing alcohol or drugs while operating boats. According to Washington State Parks boating programs, between 2007 and 2011, at least 30 people died in reportable boating accidents where alcohol use was a contributing factor.

The main focus of the campaign is to raise awareness of the problem and get impaired boat operators off the water by actively enforcing the law that prohibits using alcohol and drugs while operating a boat.

The goal is to influence boaters to make the decision to boat dry and to reinforce it with a zero tolerance enforcement policy.

Officers will be on the lookout for boat operators whose blood alcohol concentration exceeds the national limit of .08. It is illegal in every state and territory to operate a boat while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

BUI laws pertain to ALL boats, from canoes and rowboats to the largest vessels.

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