The National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA), in partnership with the U.S. Coast Guard and hundreds of local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies, conducted the fifteenth annual Operation Dry Water weekend July 1 – 3, 2023.
LEXINGTON, Ky., Nov. 2, 2023 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ -- In an effort to increase public awareness surrounding the dangers of boating under the influence (BUI) and remove impaired operators from our nation's waterways, the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA), in partnership with the U.S. Coast Guard and hundreds of local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies, conducted the fifteenth annual Operation Dry Water weekend July 1 – 3, 2023.
Over the course of the three-day weekend, 488 law enforcement agencies deployed 7,767 officers which resulted in a total of 717 boating under the influence (BUI) arrests. In addition, law enforcement personnel interacted with over 300,000 boaters during their patrols, providing an opportunity for officers to educate boaters and help raise awareness about the significant dangers related to boating under the influence.
"Every impaired boater creates a hazardous situation not only for themselves but also for fellow recreators out on the water," says Lt. Curt Lewis, NASBLA Chair. "The substantial law enforcement presence on the water, coupled with the heightened outreach and educational endeavors of the 'Operation Dry Water' campaign, has contributed to a safer and more enjoyable environment for recreational boaters."
In addition to enforcement efforts on the water, NASBLA also worked diligently with the states, other law enforcement agencies, boating safety organizations, and the U.S. Coast Guard to develop and execute the Operation Dry Water marketing and outreach campaign. This collaborative effort aimed to go beyond enforcing boating under the influence laws; it sought to increase public awareness and educate boaters about the risks associated with impaired boating.
The campaign's targeted enforcement weekend occurs each year around the July 4th holiday, a time when there is a consistent increase in boating incidents and fatalities related to alcohol and drug impairment. The 2024 Operation Dry Water heightened awareness and enforcement weekend will take place nationwide, July 4 – 6, 2024.
The National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) coordinates the Operation Dry Water campaign, in partnership with law enforcement agencies and outreach partners nationwide, through a grant from the Sport Fish Restoration and Boating Trust Fund administered by the U.S. Coast Guard.
Operation Dry Water (ODW) 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 use on the water. http://www.operationdrywater.org.
SOURCE National Association of State Boating Law Administrators