Officers with the Ohio Department of Natural Resources were busy on the weekend before the Fourth of July scouring the waterways for drunken boaters. Their efforts were not in vain. Officers arrested eight people for boating under the influence and issued another 102 citations, according to a story in the Columbus Dispatch. Officers also issued nearly 900 warnings.
Ohio’s law on operating a boat after consuming alcohol is similar to its law regulating driving under the influence. Boat operators cannot have a blood alcohol level 0.08 or higher. If they do, they have committed a first-degree misdemeanor and could face six months in jail. The law also applies to people operating canoes and kayaks.
There are very good reasons for Ohio’s crackdown on drunken boating. Drinking alcohol on a boat is the leading factor in boating fatalities. Alcohol can impair a person’s reflexes, vision, and reasoning ability, as well as make it difficult to swim if a person is tossed overboard. For these reasons, passengers on the boat also should not drink.
If your operator is under the influence, then the boat could strike the shore, a rock, another boat, or another boat’s wake. Any collision could send passengers colliding with each other, or they could end up thrown overboard.
As a result of collisions, many people suffer:
Even if victims survive, they face the prospect of months of painful recovery and missed work.
Whether you were riding in the same boat as the drunk operator or were in a different boat, you can bring a personal injury lawsuit to receive compensation for your injuries. Boating under the influence is also a crime, but injured victims can sustain a private lawsuit in civil court to receive compensation.
At Lafferty, Gallagher & Scott, our Toledo boat accident attorneys know how to collect the right evidence to make an airtight case. We can:
Based on our experience, we are fully prepared to negotiate a settlement on your behalf but are not afraid of the courtroom if filing a lawsuit is necessary to vindicate your rights.
If you were injured on one of Ohio’s many waterways, we want to hear from you. Injured victims need compensation when someone else’s wrongful conduct causes them pain and financial loss. At Lafferty, Gallagher, & Scott, our boat accident attorneys are pleased to offer a free, no-strings consultation to learn more about your case. Contact us today.
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