With Labor Day weekend approaching, we know that there will be a number of people enjoying recreational boating activities on the water.
If you are on the water this weekend, make sure that you avoid drunk boating at all costs, as there will be increased patrol in many waterways, and an accident could result in criminal charges and civil consequences.
Recently, Mothers Against Drunk Driving had an interesting blog post about the dangers of drunk boating on the holidays. According to the organization, while Labor Day weekend is a deadly weekend on our roadways, it can also be dangerous on our waterways.
MADD discussed the story of Alex Otte, a 13-year-old from Kentucky, who was on a jet ski that was struck by a fishing boat that was traveling at 60 mph in 2010. Otte suffered critical injuries including a shattered jaw, broken neck and collarbone, broken femurs and a lacerated liver in the accident. She also lost her right leg.
The man who struck her on Lake Herrington was arrested after it was discovered that he had a blood alcohol level three times over the legal limit. Unfortunately, the man did not do jail time and was only fined $250 due to lenient laws in Kentucky regarding drunk boating.
Because of this, Otte, who recovered from her injuries, began campaigning for tougher BUI penalties. Otte is currently lobbying state legislators and the Fish and Wildlife Department to introduce tougher laws for drunk boaters.
According to MADD, Otte’s story should serve as a reminder of the dangers of drunk boating. According to the organization, the environment on a boat – motion, vibration, engine noise, sun, wind and spray – accelerates alcohol impairment.
If You are Hurt in a Holiday Drunk Boating Accident, Our Maritime Attorneys Can Help
Just as operating a vehicle under the influence of alcohol is unacceptable, so too is drunk boating.
Our maritime attorneys have represented people involved in recreational boating accidents from across the country, including victims of drunk or negligent boaters. Visit our verdicts and settlement page to read more about the victims our law firm represents.
We handle cases from across the country. Stay safe this weekend.
Latti & Anderson LLP – Nationwide Maritime Attorneys