Washington law prohibits operating a vessel while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. The term “vessel” includes “every description of watercraft on the water, other than a seaplane, used or capable of being used as a means of transportation on the water,” except “inner tubes, air mattresses, sailboards, and small rafts or flotation devices or toys customarily used by swimmers.”
A person can be convicted of boating under the influence (BUI) for operating a vessel while:
So, a BUI conviction can be based on actual impairment or the amount of drugs or alcohol in the boater's system.
The consequences of a Washington BUI depend on the circumstances of the case. But generally, the consequences are:
Of course, every situation is different. So, these penalties might or might not apply to any given case.
If you’ve been arrested for or charged with boating under the influence in Washington, get in contact with an experienced BUI attorney. The facts of every case are different. A good BUI attorney should be able to explain how the law applies to the facts of your case and help you decide on your best course of action.