“Third, don’t consume alcohol before or while boating. When you add alcohol to boating, your senses and judgment can be seriously affected. Your reflexes, balance, coordination and alertness will deteriorate, along with your ability to deal with speed, other boats and threatening weather. You are setting yourself up for a boating accident,” Mariani said. Alcohol use is the leading known contributing factor in fatal boating accidents; where the primary cause was known, it was listed as the leading factor in nearly one-fourth of deaths.