Is using a Paddle-board, a Kayak, or a Canoe a Chargeable Offence When Impaired with Alcohol or Drugs?

Driving under the influence is a chargeable offence that can lead to life-long repercussions, but is it considered driving under the influence too when one uses a canoe, a kayak, or a paddle-board while drunk or intoxicated? Isn’t it just ‘having fun’?

Know the Legal Limits for Boating

Do you know that the law limits the allowable legal limit of alcohol in your blood for boating is just the same as when driving a land vehicle? With this in mind, it is a chargeable offence to operate a canoe, kayak, or paddle-board if your blood alcohol concentration is at 0.08% and above. This level can be determined by a breathalyzer or a blood test but know that your level of intoxication can also be affected by your weight, gender, age, and general body tolerance for alcohol. It is better to know your limit prior to getting into a boat or face the consequences if you get pulled over.

Boating While Impaired Penalties

Getting apprehended by police while intoxicated with alcohol or drugs while boating can mean several hundred dollars in fine plus jail time if you’re a repeat offender. The minimum penalty in Canada for this is at $600. Know that a second offence will get you up to 14 days in jail and up to 90 days in prison for a third offence. Penalties can be a lot more if you were also involved in a boating accident while impaired.

Can You Be Charged if Someone Else is Impaired?

Anyone who is in the boat and is operating or navigating it in any way (even in a small way) should not be impaired by alcohol or drugs. Someone who isn’t sober can place everyone in jeopardy and still result in a charge even if the boat has stopped moving. Opened alcohol and drug containers on the boat can also put you in trouble even when no one seems to be impaired by it.

If you’ve been involved in a ‘boating while impaired charge’, the best defence starts with contacting a drinking and driving lawyer as soon as possible. Proper legal representation is your primary protection to make sure that the charge will have only the smallest possible impact on your future. Calvin Barry is a seasoned DUI lawyer in TorontoCall Calvin Barry today!

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