Rescued Boater Faces Alcohol Charge

FENWICK ISLAND – A Maryland man was charged early Sunday morning by DNREC Division of Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police with operating a vessel under the influence of alcohol (OUI) following a boating accident that left him clinging to his capsized 28-foot cabin cruiser for about two hours in the water off Cape Windsor, west of Fenwick Island.

boat2The boat’s operator, Jeffrey S. Collier, 54, of Bel Air, Md. was brought to shore by Roxana Fire Company’s marine unit after Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police, the Delaware State Police Aviation Unit and the fire company responded to a 911 call placed from the headwaters of Big Assawoman Bay about 11:15 p.m. Saturday. Collier was cited by Natural Resources Police for OUI, negligent operation of a vessel and failure to maintain a proper lookout and released, pending an appearance in Justice of the Peace Court 14 in Georgetown at a later date.

Collier was alone aboard the vessel, with no injuries reported. His boat was recovered Sunday morning by a commercial salvage company. The accident remains under investigation by Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police.

Boaters navigating Delaware waters are reminded that operating a boat with a blood alcohol level of 0.08 percent or higher is in violation of Delaware and federal laws. Boat operators found to be at or above the limit will find their voyage terminated, will be cited and may have their vessel impounded. Boat operators found to be under the influence also can face fines and potential jail time. For more information, please visit Delaware Boating Safety.

Image Credits: TowBoatUS Ocean City

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First State Update's Delaware editorial team covers New Castle County, Kent County and Sussex County breaking news, political news, and general news stories. We bring the reader the latest news from the Wilmington, Newark, Dover, Rehoboth Beach and all point in between. If you have news to share, email us at desk@firststateupdate.com.