Oklahoma City, OK 73105
For Immediate Release: March 12, 2009
Sen. Bill Brown
Senate Approves Bill to Lower Limit for Boating Under Influence
Legislation that would lower the legal blood alcohol
concentration limit for the offense of boating under the influence
from 0.10 percent to 0.08 percent was approved by the state Senate
on Thursday. The measure would also prohibit children under the
age of 12 from operating personal watercraft.
Brown, author of Senate Bill 902, said the Legislature needed
to add teeth to the state’s boating laws in order to reduce
watercraft-related accidents and deaths.
“In order to prevent tragedies on our waterways,
we need to establish strong deterrents to prevent boating under
the influence,” said Brown, R-Broken Arrow. “This
measure simply brings our limits for boating under the influence
in line with our limits for driving under the influence. Operating
watercraft under the influence is just as dangerous as operating
a car or truck, and there’s no reason the legal blood alcohol
concentration limit should be higher.”
Brown noted that alcohol use is the leading factor
in fatal boating accidents, including several high-profile Oklahoma
cases in recent years.
“Our lakes are beautiful places and important
recreational sites that we have a responsibility to preserve,”
Brown said. “We ought to be able to enjoy the natural beauty
of our lakes and rivers without having to worry about safety.
I strongly feel that we can minimize risk for children and families
by signing this bill into law. Today’s vote was an important
step in that effort.”
Senate Bill 902 now advances to the House for consideration.
For more information contact:
Sen. Brown's Office: 405-521-5602