With summer in full swing, many New Yorkers are enjoying the waterways of our state on boats and jet skis. As nice as it is to have a drink out on the water, it is important that the individual who is driving does not consume alcohol as they operate the vessel. In November 2016, New York State’s boating while intoxicated laws got stricter. Now, individuals who have had previous drunk driving arrests will face stronger penalties upon sentencing for operating a boat while intoxicated.
This is a change from the previous law that didn’t consider drunk driving offenses when a boating while intoxicated offense is at play and therefore, having a prior arrest did not count against the individual as a repeat offender when sentenced for the other crime. The law now requires all individuals who are facing a 30-day sentence for boating while intoxicated will have all prior DWI convictions from the last 5 years considered during sentencing. In addition, those who are facing a 180-day sentence for boating while intoxicated will have the previous ten years considered for other DWI convictions.
The use of alcohol is a leading contributor to boating accidents and deaths in New York State. If you are facing BWI charges, contact our firm today to discuss your options.
If you are in need of experienced legal counsel for a criminal defense matter on Long Island or throughout New York State, please contact Grunwald & Seman, P.C. to schedule a consultation and we would be happy to assist you.