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Boating, fishing and other water sports are fun in their own right. Alcohol can turn a great day on the water into the tragedy of a lifetime. Consider these alternatives to using alcohol while afloat in order to avoid boating under the influence (BUI).

Take along a variety of cool drinks, such as sodas, water, iced tea, lemonade or non-alcoholic beer.

Bring plenty of food and snacks.

Wear clothes that will help keep you and your passengers cool.

Plan to limit your trip to a reasonable time to avoid fatigue. Remember that its common to become tired more quickly on the water.

If you want to make alcohol part of your days entertainment, plan to have a party ashore at the dock, in a picnic area, at a boating club, or in your backyard

Choose a location where youll have time between the fun and getting back into your car or boat.

If you dock somewhere for lunch or dinner and drink alcohol with your meal, wait a reasonable time (estimated at a minimum of an hour per drink) before operating your boat.

Having no alcohol while aboard is the safest way to enjoy the water intoxicated passengers are also at risk of injury and falls overboard.

Spread the word on the dangers of BUI. Many recreational boaters forget that a boat is a vehicle and that safe operation is a legal and personal responsibility.

Source: U.S. Coast Guard

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