Gov. Pat McCrory on Monday signed into law legislation that will make the penalties for drunken boating resulting in death or serious injury the same as they are for impaired drivers on land.
The governor signed the bill, titled “Sheyenne’s Law,” in a ceremony at Cox Mill High School in Concord. That’s where Sheyenne Marshall was a rising senior when she was struck and killed by a pontoon boat on Lake Norman a year ago. Authorities said the pontoon driver had been drinking. Marshall’s family, students, teachers and others attended the signing.
“This bill cannot bring Sheyenne back to us, but it can help save others by sending a strong message that drunk driving in a boat is just as dangerous as in a car,” McCrory said. “With summer here and millions of people flocking to our state’s lakes and beaches, I want to remind everyone not to drink and drive.”
The governor’s office reported that 25 people died due to boating-related accidents in North Carolina last year, and that nearly half of them involved alcohol.