Bikes, Boats, and Booze

The Fourth of July is here! Let the celebration begin. Independence Day is a day of remembrance and a time to reflect and appreciate our freedoms. I truly am thankful to be an American. There…I said it. An American. I am proud of this great country. I am proud of where we began and where we are—not perfect, but a work in progress.

I am thankful for the men and women who have sacrificed it all so that I can sit in my office and write how I feel. So please take advantage this holiday weekend and take time to thank God for all that He has done for not only us as individuals, but for all that he continues to do for our country.

Many of us will take to the roads and travel to places where there is much to do and enjoy this holiday. I will be riding with friends this Independence Day with no real path in mind. Many of my other friends and family will be celebrating on the water in their boats and jet skis. No matter where we may end up, it is always a good time to celebrate our freedom together.  

Whether biking or boating, we all must be cognizant of our conduct when it comes to consuming alcohol. In our country, alcohol is legally and widely accessible. People have their favorite brands of booze at celebrations for family and guests to enjoy. But with that enjoyment comes serious responsibility.

Whether you choose to ride or drive, ski or boat, remember to be responsible. It is your choice to enjoy an adult beverage, but our laws demand that you be responsible for anything that happens because of your choice. Alcohol is legal… until it’s not. Put another way, drink your favorite beverage and celebrate, but it is you who will be held responsible if accidents occur on the highways and waterways as a result of your choices.

In South Carolina, if there is a presumption that you are under the influence, the legal limit is a .08 blood alcohol content (BAC) both on water and land. Also remember a BAC of between .05 and .08 can still be prosecuted in front of a judge or jury, and you can still be found guilty. There are many nuances found within our driving and boating under the influence laws that need to be vetted by a lawyer should you be charged. More importantly, the ramifications that follow a conviction are life changing. In our great state, you owe a duty to others of safety and caution. You are not the only one out there, and you must be mindful of that fact. It’s all fun and games until someone decides to get in their car, jump on their bike, or take out the boat after having consumed too much alcohol.

First, think before you crank your bike, boat, or car. If you feel you shouldn’t operate the vehicle, DON’T. But if you do make the choice to drive or ride and you find yourself charged with operating the vehicle while under the influence, call me. I am around 24/7 and will be happy to talk to you.

Happy Fourth of July and safe travels!

Attorney Steve Denton
Attorney Steve Denton

Blog post by partner Steve Denton. Click here to learn more about Steve.

The posts on this website/blog are published as a service to our clients and friends. They are intended to provide general information only and should not be construed to be formal legal advice regarding any specific situation and should not be construed as forming an attorney-client relationship. Success in the past does not indicate the likelihood of success in any future representation.

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