As Summer quickly approaches you can expect more and more people to get outside and enjoy the beautiful lakes and rivers that Wisconsin has to offer.

And while most people are just out to have good family fun with the ones they love, there are always a few who will want to add alcohol to the mix.

If you are someone who enjoys having a drink while out on the water, please know that there are serious consequences if you consume too much alcohol while operating a boat on the water.

Operation Dry Water

Law enforcement is very aware of the dangers drunk boaters pose…

In 2009, after one of the deadliest boating seasons in recent history, the Wisconsin police department and conservation wardens felt is was time to put measures in place to help crack down on drinking while boating.

They launched Operation Dry Water to educate boaters on the dangers of boating while under the influence, and to increase enforcement.

In 2012 over 20 law enforcement agencies from all over the state came together for a weekend long operation that resulted in 10 arrests over the course of two days.

And while this level of law enforcement is not something you will see every weekend at Wisconsin lakes and rivers, it did prove to be a huge success as it brought awareness to this very serious issue.

3 Important Things You Need To Know About Boating While Intoxicated
  1. If you choose to operate a boat while under the influence you are giving consent to taking an alcohol or drug test.
  2.  Your blood alcohol level (BAC) must be below .08 while operating a boat.
  3.  The penalties for drinking while operating a boat can be very severe.
Penalties for Boating While Intoxicated

In the state of Wisconsin it doesn’t matter if you are operating a boat on the water or a regular vehicle, the blood alcohol limit of .08 applies to both.

If you are operating a commercial motorboat the legal limit is .04.

Here are some of the penalties you will face if you are caught operating a boat under the influence of alcohol.

  • Your first offense will result in a fine of up to $300.
  • Any second offense that occurs within 5 years of the first offense will result in a fine of up to $1000 and the possibility of jail time of no less than 5 days, and up to 6 months.
  • Any third offense that occurs, and having 2 prior convictions within the last 5 years, will result in a fine of no less than $600 and no more than $2,000 and will serve no less than 30 days, and up to one year in the county jail.
  • While a boating OWI will not affect your boating privileges, you may be ordered by the courts to take a boating safety course and be required to present a certificate of satisfactory completion.
  • If at the time you are arrested you already have a certificate, that certificate will be revoked and you will be required to repeat the course and get a new one.
Hire An Experienced OWI Attorney

If you have been cited for a boating OWI in Wisconsin, the most important thing you can do is hire an experienced attorney.

Jessie Weber is an experienced attorney who has years of experience dealing with Wisconsin boating OWI cases.

She will sit down with you and make sure you understand every option that is available to you.

To schedule a consultation contact Jessie Weber law offices at 715-589-7737.

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