What's A BUI? - The Los Angeles DUI Blog

The Los Angeles DUI Law Blog

What's A BUI?

Almost everybody knows it's illegal to drive under the influence of alcohol or other drugs, but many people are unaware that operating a boat or personal watercraft under the influence is also illegal. In California, you can be charged with a misdemeanor or even a felony for Boating Under the Influence, also known as BUI.

The U.S. Coast Guard says "alcohol is more hazardous on water than on land." Boating injuries and fatalities may increase dramatically when alcohol is involved. BUI incidents increase boating fatalities by approximately 34 percent, according to the U.S Coast Guard.

California law enforcement officers may even set up BUI checkpoints on the water, which generally follow the same rules as roadside DUI checkpoints. Around particular holidays, boat drivers can particularly expect to see checkpoints on the water. Memorial Day, Fourth of July and Labor Day are common days for law enforcers to be on the lookout for drunk boaters.

The legal limit when boating under the influence of alcohol is .08 BAC, where people under 21 cannot have any alcohol in their system, so a BAC of .01 can lead to a BUI arrest. Children under 21 cannot even use water skis under the influence of alcohol. If you've been arrested on suspicion of a California BUI, don't hesitate to call a Los Angeles drunk driving attorney who has extensive knowledge of DUI and BUI laws. Defending a BUI charge often requires an understanding of scientific and medical concepts, so it's smart to get a defense attorney involved with the case.