Archive for the ‘boating’ tag
September 24th, 2013 at 9:19 pm
With the advent of autumn and with summer slipping away, it seems that boating season is just about over. Yet after the water clears has proven an important moment in Illinois, where recreational boating is as common as deep-dish pizza, to discuss the law and culture surrounding the activity. According to a mid-September op-ed in the Chicago Tribune, “most people wouldn’t dare brandish an open container while behind the wheel of a car. But beer and boating go together.” In the past few years DUI boating accidents have become an all-too-common tale. According to Northern Public Radio, “there were 101 boating-related accidents on Illinois waters” in 2012, “resulting in 17 deaths and 77 injuries.” In 13 of the accidents and five of the fatalities alcohol was a contributing factor.
As a result, earlier this summer Governor Pat Quinn signed into law new legislation meant to curb such DUI boating accidents. The new legislation was announced after ten-year-old Tony Borcia, “boating with his dad and siblings on a string of lakes connected by the Fox River,” fell off his tube and was struck by a speedboat driver who was drunk and high on cocaine. The new law, according to Northern Public Radio, “says a boat operator who’s intoxicated or refuses to submit to blood alcohol testing could lose his license to drive a car.” Yet it only applies “if there’s a serious accident or death,” Northern Public Radio Reports.
The new law goes into effect on January 1 of next year, according to Fox News. This means that the boating season will be significantly impacted next year, and that all boat owners and lake revelers in the Chicago-area should be prepared for a different type of boating season. Not only could the new legislation affect a person’s eligibility to drive on land, according to the Tribune op-ed it’d also “require boat operators born after Jan. 1, 1990 to have a safety certificate from the Department of Natural Resources. Another would require boats towing a person on a tube or skis to display an orange safety flag.”
If you or someone you know has been charged with DUI, either on land or on water don’t go through it alone. Contact a dedicated Illinois DUI attorney today.