Each state has specific rules regarding the legality of drinking while
boating. In the state of Missouri, you are legally allowed to drink alcohol
while on board a boat or water vessel. However, if you are found to be
drinking while operating a watercraft or motorized vessel including a
jet ski or a sailboat, you can be charged with boating while intoxicated
(BWI) with the consequences being similar to a DWI charge.
A BWI is a class B
misdemeanor, meaning you can be issued a $500 fine in addition to facing possible
jail time. In a first offense of BWI, you will be required to take a boater
safety course. If charged with a second offense of BWI, it is considered
a class A misdemeanor in St. Louis and could result in $1,000 fine and
possible up to one year in prison. If convicted of a third BWI, the charge
escalates to a class D
felony, with the punishment including a possible $5,000 fine and up to four years
served in prison.
Similar to a DWI charge, you could also face the loss of your driver's
license in addition to possible probation and community service. To learn
more about Boating While Intoxicated and the potential penalties associated
with the charge, visit our
BWI page or call us at 314-621-0622 for a FREE consultation.