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Aerial View of Lake Oconee

What to know about boating under the influence

On Behalf of | Oct 19, 2022 | DUI

Many people like to relax by having a couple of beers while enjoying some time on and around Lake Oconee.  Boating, water skiing and riding jet skis can be very healthy and fun ways to enjoy some well-earned time off work. Lake Oconee, Georgia is a beautiful place to enjoy nature and relax with family and friends. However, some people go into vacation mode while on their boats and forget that many drunk driving  laws apply to boating just like any other motor vehicle.

Here are some things that boat operators should know about boating while under the influence of alcohol on one of Georgia’s many public lakes and rivers.

It is a criminal offense that can result in severe penalties

One or two beers or other alcoholic beverages are not generally enough to put most adults over the legal limit of blood alcohol concentration for operating a motor vehicle. However, any more than this and someone could be getting into the territory of having a blood alcohol level that is over the legal limit. Factors such as sex, body weight and amount of food and water consumed while drinking alcohol also contribute to how quickly someone becomes intoxicated.

It applies to water skis and jet skis as well

Boating while under the influence of alcohol laws in Georgia not only apply to those operating boats on public waterways but extend to those on water skis and similar apparatuses as well. Vacationers should be aware of how the law applies to them prior to going out on Lake Oconee or other lakes and rivers in Georgia. Georgia law enforcement officials may conduct safety checks of your personal watercraft to make sure you have life jackets.

Knowing the laws and how they apply to an individual’s circumstances is a good way to avoid getting into legal trouble for boating under the influence of alcohol. Being aware of boating laws helps ensure that a day at the lake remains safe and fun instead of a path to jail time and loss of boating privileges.  In the event you run into trouble while enjoying Lake Oconee, reach out to E.J. Boswell for local legal representation.