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Updated: 07/25/2014 08:00:01AM

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Bill Hempel

By Bill Hempel

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There’s been a lot of news recently regarding boating under the influence of alcohol. But there’s little discussion of BWF — boating while fatigued.

We all want to be safe on the water, and we want others to be safe. However, most boaters don’t realize that studies have shown the fatigue factor associated with a full day under the hot summer sun causes a lack of focus and concentration equivalent to that of a person whose sobriety test shows them to be over the legal alcohol limit. Combine this factor with the glare of the sun off the water, and you have a potentially lethal combination. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission has increased their surveillance of potentially intoxicated boaters, but have no way to check for fatigue.

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