Boating Under the Influence-BUI-in Oklahoma – Law & Punishment

Boating Under the Influence in Oklahoma – BUI

oklahoma bui boating under the influence defense attorneyIt’s illegal to operate or be in actual physical control of a vessel upon the waters of Oklahoma, except privately owned waters, if you:

  1. Have as a blood or breath alcohol concentration of 0.08 or more at the time of a test of your blood or breath;
  2. Are under the influence of any other intoxicating substance to a degree that renders you incapable of safely operating a vessel on the water; or
  3. Are under the influence of alcohol and any other intoxicating substance to a degree that renders you incapable of safely operating a vessel on the water.

“Other intoxicating substance” means any controlled dangerous substance or any other substance, other than alcohol, that’s capable of being ingested, inhaled, injected, or absorbed into the human body and is capable of adversely affecting the central nervous system, vision, hearing, or other sensory or motor functions.

If you’re operating a vessel upon the waters of Oklahoma (except privately owned waters), then you’re deemed to have given consent to a test or tests of your blood, breath, saliva, or urine for the purpose of determining the presence and concentration of alcohol or any other intoxicating substance. This means that Oklahoma is an implied consent state when it comes to boat operators.

The test must be performed within two hours of arrest. A refusal to submit to the test or tests constitutes a violation of this law.

If you’re under 21, then a BAC of 0.02 is prima facie evidence that you are BUI. For someone 21 or older:

  1. BAC of 0.07 or less is prima facie evidence that you weren’t under the influence of alcohol; and
  2. BAC of 0.08 or more is prima facie evidence that you were under the influence of alcohol.

Punishment

This crime is a misdemeanor. The maximum fine is $1,000. The range of punishment for a second or subsequent conviction is $1,000-$2,500.

If you’re arrested for this crime, then you may a cash bail in an amount set by the arresting law enforcement officer not to exceed the maximum fine provided by this law, or deposit a valid license to operate a motor vehicle in exchange for a receipt.

A BUI charge or conviction does not affect your driver’s license.

Arrested for BUI in Oklahoma? Get a free case consultation.

Negligent Homicide

Negligent homicide occurs when the death of any person ensues within one year as a proximate result of injury received by the operating of a vessel by any person 16 or older in reckless disregard of the safety of others. The person so operating that vessel is liable for negligent homicide.

This crime is a misdemeanor. The maximum punishment in jail is one year. The maximum fine is $1,000.

Other Boating Crimes

Reckless or Negligent Operation of Parasails, Water Skis, Surfboard, and Other Watercraft

It’s illegal to operate, manipulate, or give permission to any person to operate or manipulate any parasails, water skis, surfboard, personal watercraft, or similar device, or any vessel in a reckless or negligent manner so as to endanger the life or property of any person.

This crime is a misdemeanor. The range of fine is $50-$250. The maximum punishment in jail is six months.

Give Permission to Operate While Under the Influence of Alcohol

It’s illegal to lease or otherwise give permission to another person to operate any vessel on any waters of Oklahoma, except privately owned waters, while the operator is under the influence of alcohol or any substance included in the Uniform Controlled Dangerous Substances Act or any combination of alcohol and such substance.

This crime is a misdemeanor. The range of fine is $50-$250. The maximum punishment in jail is six months.

Failure to Yield Right of Way in a Boat

Upon the immediate approach of an authorized emergency vessel making use of an audible or a visual signal or a combination thereof, the operator of every other vessel shall immediately stop his or her vessel whenever or wherever practical or otherwise yield the right-of-way until such authorized emergency vessel has passed, except when otherwise directed by a duly authorized peace officer of this state.

This crime is a misdemeanor. The range of fine is $50-$250. The maximum punishment in jail is six months.

Overloading a Boat

It’s illegal to overload or give permission to overload a vessel with passengers or gear so as to exceed the posted capacity plate, United States Coast Guard standards, or the vessel manufacturer’s recommended capacity.

This crime is a misdemeanor. The range of fine is $50-$250. The maximum punishment in jail is six months.

Exceeding Boat’s Horsepower Capacity

It’s illegal to operate or give permission to operate any vessel on the waters of Oklahoma or which the manufacturer has affixed a maximum horsepower capacity plate so as to exceed the posted capacity plate or to exceed the United States Coast Guard standards for maximum horsepower capacity; provided, this law doesn’t apply to vessels operating in sanctioned events.

This crime is a misdemeanor. The range of fine is $50-$250. The maximum punishment in jail is six months.

Speeding in a Boat

It’s illegal to operate, drive, or be in actual physical control of any vessel on any waters of Oklahoma, except privately owned waters, at speeds in excess of the speed limits established for those waters.

This crime is a misdemeanor. The range of fine is $50-$250. The maximum punishment in jail is six months.

Operating Boat to Close to other Boats

It’s illegal to operate on the waters of Oklahoma, except privately owned waters, any vessel, including personal watercraft, within 50 feet in proximity to another vessel when running at speeds of over 10 miles per hour; provided, this prohibition doesn’t apply to vessels operating in sanctioned events.

This crime is a misdemeanor. The range of fine is $50-$250. The maximum punishment in jail is six months.

Sources: 63 O.S. §§ 4210, 4210.1, 4210.13, & 4210.8

Current as of April 9, 2020. Laws are subject to change at any time. See the linked statutes above for the most current law.

Charged with boating under the influence in Oklahoma? Call Oklahoma BUI lawyer Frank Urbanic in OKC for a free case consultation.

Don’t panic! Call Urbanic.® 405-633-3420