Connecticut DEEP is Participating in National Boating Under the
Influence Enforcement and Education Campaign over July 4th Weekend
As boaters begin to prepare for the July 4th holiday weekend, law enforcement officers across Connecticut will be on heightened alert looking for those violating boating under the influence laws. Connecticut Department of Energy & Environmental Protection (DEEP) Environmental Conservation Police (EnCon), in partnership with the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators, local law enforcement, and the U.S. Coast Guard, will be participating in the national Operation Dry Water heightened awareness and enforcement weekend from July 3 – 5, 2020.
DEEP is working to increase boater awareness of the dangers and risks associated with boating under the influence and will be on the lookout for impaired boaters on Connecticut’s lakes, ponds, and rivers, as well as Long Island Sound. Boaters will notice an overall increase in officer patrols both on the water and at recreational boating checkpoints. The priority during this holiday weekend is to provide boaters with a safe and enjoyable experience by removing dangerous and impaired boaters from the waterways.
“Every year, we see boating accidents and tragedies that could have been avoided, had alcohol or drug use not been a factor. Our job is to ensure that recreational boaters, paddlers and anyone on our waters has a safe place to enjoy time with their family and friends,” says EnCon Captain Keith Williams. “Alcohol use can impair a boater’s judgement, balance, vision and reaction time.”
Operating a vessel under the influence of alcohol or drugs is illegal on all bodies of water and can lead to serious injuries and consequences. In Connecticut, it is illegal to operate a vessel with a blood alcohol content level of 0.08 – the same as it is to operate a vehicle. DEEP reminds boaters to boat sober and always wear a life jacket when on the water.
Operation Dry Water is a year-round boating under the influence awareness and enforcement campaign with the mission of reducing the number of alcohol and drug related accidents and fatalities through increased recreational boater awareness and by fostering a stronger and more visible deterrent to alcohol and drug use on the water.
Visit Operation Dry Water for more information about boating under the influence.