In the state of Texas, a BWI, or boating while intoxicated, is defined as a person committing the offense of operating a watercraft while intoxicated. This is typically a class B misdemeanor, carrying a minimum confinement of a full 72 hours. However, there are exceptions to this listed under Section 49.09. The charge of BWI is a serious one, so prove yourself a responsible captain when you use a watercraft. Never overindulge when you have fun on Texas waters. Also, make sure that you are always wearing a life vest, and have enough on board for all your passengers. If you’re planning on treating guests to your watercraft, do not ever drink.
Our firm has many years of professional experience in handling BWI Texas cases that happen on waterways, as well as cases involving Texas boating laws in general. That includes places like Houston, Galveston Bay, Livingston, and Conroe. We know how badly a BWI arrest can harm your personal or professional reputation, just like DUI or DWI arrests are known to do. Truth be told, the negative consequences of a BWI are just as bad as DWI in terms of what it does to your family and career.
Anyone Can Be Arrested For BWI
Imagine going to sea for 15 hours of fishing. You see a vessel approach and realize that it is law enforcement. The board you for a safety inspection of your craft. Once the officer inquires about how many life preservers there are on the craft, the conversation might turn pretty fast to the smell of booze on your breath.
You can get whisked off the boat right onto the law enforcement craft, then taken back to shore. You’ll probably have a quarter of an hour to walk off sea legs and then be taken through standing on just one leg, walking in a straight line, and tilting back your head while your eyes are closed. The officers might determine your balance is abnormal and then decide you’re guilty of intoxicated boating.
The situation just presented is based on true events where individuals were arrested unfairly for boating during intoxication.
The attorneys at Butler Law Firm have 25+ years of criminal defense for DWI and BWI cases. Don’t be caught not knowing your rights. Seek appropriate counsel now, and get your free consultation by calling (713) 236-8744
You owe it to yourself to know Texas BWI Laws!