We have written numerous articles about the law, the potential disasters and legal consequences of boating under the influence (BUI) of alcohol and drugs. What usually comes to mind in such a reported case is a group of young people, probably in a small boat, along with friends, enjoying the day on the water. Unfortunately they are enjoying the day along with a few adult beverages and possibly illegal substances. Recently in RI a different kind of BUI report was headlined.
“Canoeist Charged with Boating Under Influence”
A canoeist was arrested last week on a large pond and, after a police search, was charged with boating under the influence and possession of marijuana when his son was found apparently stranded on an island.
Officers responded to phone calls shortly after 9 p.m. from residents in the area who heard a child yelling across the pond for his father.
Police found the 12-year-old boy, who was fine, and said that his father, who was in a canoe, dropped him off on the shore and would return for him later. At that point about 45 minutes had passed. The child was afraid that his father could have gotten into an accident on the pond.
The police called in the Fire Department and the Department of Environmental Management. The boy’s father paddled to a dock as the search was to begin.
Upon giving Christopher Buckley, 50, a field-sobriety test, which he failed, the police escorted him to the station. At the police station, when Buckley consented to a breath test of his blood-alcohol level his first reading was 0.159 and his second reading was 0.166, Jones said. The legal limit is 0.08.
Buckley was held overnight at the police station and was to be arraigned in District Court, Newport.
Don’t drink or toke and boat, no matter what your choice of watercraft.