It is illegal to operate any boat (including boats, personal watercraft (PWCs), waterskis, sailboats, sailboards or other similar devices) while under the influence of an impairing substance, such as alcohol or drugs.
In Texas, a person is considered to be under the influence if they:
- Have a Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) level of 0.08 or higher.
In Texas, a person convicted of boating under the influence will be subject to the following penalties:
On a first conviction:
- A fine of up to $2,000 and/or;
- Imprisonment for up to 180 days.
On a second conviction:
- A fine of up to $4,000 and/or;
- Imprisonment for up to 1 year.
On a third conviction:
- A fine of up to $10,000 and/or ;
- Imprisonment from 2-10 years.
Any person operating a boat on Texas waterways is deemed to have given consent to a test or to tests to determine if they are under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs.
Refusal to submit to testing can result in suspension of the operator’s driver’s license for a minimum of 180 days.