For many South Carolina boaters, taking a group of friends out on the water for a day of fishing and fun could be their favorite way to spend a Saturday. However, every time you engage in this fun activity, it is vital to keep safety first — not just for you and your friends’ health and well-being but to avoid getting into trouble with the law.
Among the many boating safety laws that govern boaters in South Carolina are specific boating under the influence of alcohol laws. These laws go into effect when you are out on the water and if they are violated, you could be arrested and charged with a crime.
It does not matter if you are driving a motor boat or sailing a sailboat, the laws under Section 50-12-112 in South Carolina law say that “operation of a moving motorized water device or water device undersail while under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol to the extent that the person’s faculties are materially and appreciably impaired” is illegal. In the context of the law, “drugs” could be either illegal or legal or a combination of different intoxicating substances.
At the Drennan Law Firm, we have represented numerous South Carolina residents in boating while intoxicated cases. We know what the prosecution needs to convict a person, and we know what elements to look for in order to weaken the prosecution’s case against you.
The consequences of a boating while intoxicated conviction are stiff — like a $200 fine for first offenses and a $2,000 to $5,000 fine and jail time for a third offense. Therefore, if you have been accused of this crime, you may want to take your criminal defense very seriously.