Man drives boat onto Penticton wharf

The Penticton RCMP are investigating the navigational skills and safe boating habits of a Penticton man, after he managed to drive his boat onto the Penticton city wharf on Okanagan Lake late Tuesday evening.

Luckily, only one occupant on board received minor injuries, all the while several tourists on the wharf scrambled out of the way.

On Tuesday, at around 10:30pm, the Penticton RCMP responded to a report that a large boat had just hit the city Rotary Park pedestrian wharf at the South end of Okanagan Lake. RCMP investigators attended and detained the boat operator at the scene.

Several witnesses were interviewed by police, after many of them had just been enjoying a stroll on the wharf with some scrambling from benches that were in the direct path of the 28-foot day cruiser style boat.

At the time of the crash there were two occupants on board and was operated by a 45-year-old Penticton man. His passenger, a 43-year-old Richmond woman, was the only injured party receiving only a small cut to the side of her face. None of the persons who were out enjoying their evening were injured.

Officers had grounds to compel the boat operator to provide a breath sample at the scene, which led to his providing further breath samples at the police office. The second set of breath samples indicated that the man’s blood alcohol levels were at the cusp of being just over or under the legal limit.

Investigators are continuing their investigation with the possibility of unsafe or dangerous operation of a vessel being considered.

"It certain is a pretty jarring visual reminder for all boaters to operate their boats in a safe manner and to ensure they are familiar with their surrounds while under way. We are very fortunate that by a stroke of luck that nobody was seriously hurt or killed," Stated Cpl Dan Moskaluk .

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