Few things are more relaxing than spending an afternoon on one of South Carolina’s waterways. After all, tourists and locals flock to the state’s gorgeous rivers, lakes and ocean. If you combine alcohol with your boating adventure, though, you may be asking for trouble.
You do not want your boating vacation to turn into a nightmare. Most residents of the Palmetto State understand why they should not drink and drive a car. For some reason, though, that logic does not necessarily translate to boats. Still, operating a watercraft under the influence of alcohol is dangerous. Here are three reasons booze and boats do not mix:
1. Piloting a boat requires your full attention
As you probably know, there exist a number of stressors associated with boating. When you are on the water, you must contend with glare, vibrations, currents and storms. If you do not give your full attention to piloting the boat, you may find yourself in the middle of a terrible accident.
2. Alcohol affects your judgment
When sober, behaving responsibly is not usually difficult. Alcohol, though, affects judgment. When on a boat, booze may encourage you to speed, attempt stunts or otherwise act irrationally. Because you must protect yourself and your passengers, you must be able to exercise good judgment on the water.
3. Alcohol slows your reaction time
To avoid a boating accident, you must be able to react to changing conditions and other vessels quickly. Because alcohol slows your reaction time, drinking onboard is risky. You are not the only one you must worry about, though. If your passengers drink, they may not have sufficient time to respond to emergencies. As such, having a policy of no booze on the boat is a good idea.
There is nothing wrong with enjoying a few beers or cocktails. To stay safe, though, you should plan an after party on dry land. By committing to remaining sober on the water, you increase your chances of having a fun and safe day on the open water.