In the summer months, boating remains a popular past-time for many Utah residents. One thing that recreational boaters may not fully understand is that boating under the influence in Utah is really no different than driving under the influence. Police are also not the only authorities that may enforce DUI laws involving a motorboat in the state. Park rangers and officers from the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources may enforce DUI laws in the state.
A joint operation near the Utah Lake Marina in Utah County sought to enforce Utah DUI laws on the roads after boaters had enjoyed a day out on the water. Law enforcement agencies joined together to stage a DUI checkpoint outside the marina entrance Saturday evening.
Authorities say that three drivers were arrested on suspicion of DUI during the three-hour checkpoint. More than 250 vehicles were checked out during the operation, according to law enforcement.
But the enforcement effort outside the marina was not the only attempt to catch people operating while allegedly under the influence. State Park officials and wildlife agents were out on the water looking for boaters who may have been under the influence. A report from KSL indicates that wildlife officers felt that weather may have kept the number of arrests on the water down.
DUI charges can have significant impact upon a driver, or boater’s, life. While the law generally requires that law enforcement have an individualized basis to conduct a traffic stop, courts (including the United States Supreme Court) have held that a DUI checkpoint is constitutional, provided that it is conducted with sufficient safeguards to protect constitutional principles.
Any DUI investigation may contain flaws in procedure, the evidence or other legally cognizable issues. A Salt Lake City DUI defense lawyer may assess an individual set of circumstances in developing a defense strategy to DUI charges.
Source: KSL, “3 DUI arrests made during Utah Lake checkpoint,” Sandra Yi, July 27, 2013