Alaska Man Charged with DUI on a Raft

A Juneau man faces a rare DUI charge for allegedly having a 0.313 breath-alcohol content as he floated through Fairbanks on an inflatable raft Sunday night. The legal limit in both Alaska and South Carolina is 0.08.

Alaska’s driving under the influence law applies to people operating motor vehicles, water craft and airplanes. The vast majority of charges are for driving motor vehicles while intoxicated. But when Alaska State Troopers received a report of a “heavily intoxicated” man floating down the Chena River near the Parks Highway bridge at 6:40 p.m. Sunday, a wildlife trooper boat responded and arrested 32-year-old William Modene. 

“Modene had been floating on the river for the day and consuming alcoholic beverages the entire time,” troopers wrote in their “daily dispatches” log on their website. At 0.313, Modene’s breath-alcohol content was almost four times the legal limit for operating a vehicle, 0.08.Modine was arrested by state troopers and charged with DUI. Modene posted $2,500 bail on Monday.

Under Alaska’s DUI law, operating a water craft means to “navigate a vessel used or capable of being used as a means of transportation on water for recreational or commercial purposes on all waters, fresh or salt, inland or coastal, inside the territorial limits or under the jurisdiction of the state.

So, does this mean that you can be charged for DUI in South Carolina while you are floating down the Edisto River towards Charleston on your inner tube? The answer is no. South Carolina driving under the influence (DUI) and driving with unlawful alcohol concentration (DUAC) laws only cover land-based motor vehicles.  There are separate South Carolina statutes that cover operating watercraft in South Carolina's waterways.  Stay tuned for future posts concerning boating under the influence (BUI) in South Carolina.

Source: Fairbanks Daily News-Miner – Juneau man gets DUI on raft in Chena River 

Charleston DUI Attorneys

Anderson & Schuster, Attorneys at Law, LLC, is a law firm devoted to defending those charged with criminal offenses, including DUI. Our office is located in Mount Pleasant, SC and we serve clients who have been charged with a crime in Charleston, Berkeley, and Dorchester Counties, including the Charleston, North Charleston, Mt. Pleasant, Isle of Palms, Sullivans Island, Folly Beach, Summerville, Goose Creek, Hanahan, Awendaw and Moncks Corner areas.