Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73105
For Immediate Release: May 4, 2011
Sen. Bill Brown
Bill to make state’s waterways safer heads to Governor
After four years of advocating for stronger laws on boating under
the influence, Sen. Bill Brown finally succeeded Tuesday when Senate
Bill 324 passed the Senate unanimously. The measure now heads to
the Governor’s office.
“Whether people are driving on our roads or on our lakes,
they should all be held to the same legal standard. Getting this
bill passed has been a long, tedious process, but it will be well
worth the effort when we see the number of boating fatalities and
accidents decrease,” said Brown, R-Tulsa. “I want to
thank my colleagues in the Legislature for helping me get this life-saving
legislation to the Governor’s desk.”
SB 324 will lower the legal blood alcohol concentration for Boating
Under the Influence (BUI) from .10 to .08 - the same limit as for
Driving Under the Influence (DUI). The measure also includes an
implied consent provision, which mirrors current DUI laws as well.
The provision states that anyone who operates a vessel on state
waters consents to blood or breath testing to determine alcohol
The Department of Public Safety reports that since 2003 there
have been over 100 alcohol-or intoxicating substance-related boating
accidents with more than 40 deaths.
SB 324 was a request bill from Lake Eufaula’s lake patrol
and Marina Association.
“People think that boats aren’t as dangerous as cars,
but they are more so. There are no speed limits or signs to direct
traffic on the water; and the effects of alcohol are much greater
in the water than on land because of dehydration and exposure to
the elements,” said Brown, who owns a Marina at Lake Eufaula.
“This is a huge victory for all Oklahomans who enjoy water
recreation. Oklahoma’s lakes and rivers are going to be much
safer once this bill is signed into law.”
The new law will go into effect as soon as it is signed by the
For more information, contact:
Sen. Brown: (405) 521-5602