Coast Guard Launches Operation Dry Water
The Coast Guard will take to the water this week to teach people about water safety, especially about drinking and boating. As the protectors of our coasts and waterways, it is up to them to protect us from ourselves sometimes. This operation is run with help from civilian organizations.
ST. LOUIS — Coast Guard units and partner agencies will be increasing their presence on Lake Carlyle, Ill., in support of Operation Dry Water, June 28-30.
Operation Dry Water is an annual nationwide campaign during which federal, state and local maritime agencies take to the water to educate boaters and raise awareness that it is unsafe, as well as illegal, to operate a boat under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol.
According to 2012 Coast Guard statistics, alcohol use is the leading contributing factor in fatal boating accidents; it was listed as the leading factor in 17 percent of deaths. States have gotten tougher in recent years in enforcing laws against this high-risk behavior. Operating a recreational vessel with a blood alcohol concentration of .08 or higher is against federal and most state laws. Boaters caught operating under the influence will have their voyage terminated and their vessel impounded. Additionally, penalties can include arrest, fines, loss of boating privileges, even loss of driving privileges.
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