Indiana Conservation Officers from across the state will be participating in Operation Dry Water, conducting heightened boating under the influence (BUI) enforcement patrols and reaching out to recreational boaters to raise awareness about the dangers of BUI.
“Indiana waterways are meant to be a safe environment for all citizens and visitors to enjoy,” says Lt. Kenton Turner, Indiana’s Boating Law Administrator. “There is just no room for acceptance of impaired operation of a motorboat on our rivers, lakes and reservoirs.”
Operation Dry Water is the nation’s boating under the influence awareness and enforcement campaign. Law enforcement agencies and U.S. Coast Guard units across the country will be on heightened alert this weekend, looking for those boaters who have chosen to boat under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Officers will also be taking the opportunity to educate recreational boaters about BUI during this busy boating weekend, leading up to the Fourth of July.
“The mission of Operation Dry Water is to reduce the number of deaths on the water related to alcohol and drug use,” says John Fetterman, National Association of State Boating Law Administrators Deputy Executive Director. “Alcohol use is the leading contributing factor in boater deaths, and Operation Dry Water – along with all of our local, state, and federal law enforcement partners – is working hard to change that statistic. Boating is a fun and enjoyable activity, one that should be experienced safely and sober.”
In 2013, over the three-day Operation Dry Water weekend, officers from 513 law enforcement agencies and USCG units made contact with over 144,000 recreational boaters and made 290 BUI arrests. This year’s participants come from more than 500 agencies from local, state, and federal levels, and that number continues to grow as the weekend approaches.
In 2009, the National Association of Sate Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA), in partnership with the U.S. Coast Guard, launched Operation Dry Water. For more information on Operation Dry Water, please visit operationdrywater.org.