Washoe Deputies, South Lake Police, NDOW to Take Part in Operati - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe News Weather, Video -

Washoe Deputies, South Lake Police, NDOW to Take Part in Operation Dry Water

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From the Washoe County Sheriff's Office:

The Washoe County Sheriff’s Office will be working to increase awareness about the dangers of boating under the influence on the waters of North Lake Tahoe this weekend by participating in a national awareness and enforcement campaign called Operation Dry Water.  

Operation Dry Water was launched in 2009 by the National Association of State Boating Law Administration and the United States Coast Guard. The campaign’s goal is to increase boating safety by reducing drug and alcohol related boating accidents.

The Washoe County Sheriff’s Office is one of hundreds of law enforcement agencies throughout the United States that are expected to participate. North Lake Tahoe agencies also include the Eldorado County Sheriff’s Office, Nevada Department of Wildlife and the United States Coast Guard.

This is the first year the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office has participated in Operation Dry Water. As recreational activity on Lake Tahoe increases, the Sheriff’s Office felt it was also important to increase our efforts to raise awareness about the dangers of boating under the influence. Participating in Operation Dry Water allows the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office to become part of an enormous multi-agency effort to make Tahoe safer for everyone who wants to enjoy its waters.

Throughout the weekend of June 27 through 29, Washoe County Sheriff’s Deputies will be on the water at Lake Tahoe aboard Washoe County Marine 10. Deputies will be looking for signs of impaired boating and talking to boaters about the dangers of operating a motorized vessel under the influence.

Boating under the influence is illegal per Nevada state law. Alcohol use also presents many dangers to the recreational boater. U.S. Coast Guard data from past years shows alcohol use as a primary contributing factor to recreational boater deaths nationwide. Alcohol not only impairs a person’s ability to operate a watercraft, it is also known to increase fatigue along with susceptibility to the effects of colder waters such as Lake Tahoe.

A fun day on the Lake begins with a safe day on the Lake, and a safe day on the Lake begins with responsible boating.   

The following four tips for responsible boating are from the National Association of Safe Boating Laws Administration and the United States Coast Guard:

Never boat under the influence of alcohol, drugs or medication. Alcohol use is the leading contributing factor in recreational boating fatalities.
From the Washoe County Sheriff's Office

From the City of South Lake Tahoe:

The South Lake Tahoe Police Department Marine Units will be actively involved in California law enforcement officers Operation Dry Water over this weekend, June 27th through 29th.  

Operation Dry Water is an annual nationwide effort to highlight the risks and dangers of operating boats under the influence. The stepped up enforcement raises awareness of operating boats under the influence of alcohol or drugs in advance of the Fourth of July holiday. Falling on a Friday, this year’s Independence Day will kick off a three-day weekend for thousands of California boaters seeking quality time with friends and family.

Alcohol can impair a boater’s judgment, balance, vision and reaction time. It can increase fatigue and susceptibility to the effect of cold-water immersion. Sun, wind, noise, vibration and motion – “stressors” common to the boating environment – intensify the side effects of alcohol, drugs and some prescription medications.

In California, it is against the law to operate a boat or water ski with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 percent or more. A person with a BAC less than 0.08 percent may also be arrested if conditions are deemed to be unsafe. If convicted, a person may be sentenced to jail for up to six months and assessed fines of up to $1,000. Two convictions within seven years could add a jail term of up to one year. Boaters caught operating under the influence may also find their voyage terminated and their vessel impounded.

For more information on this annual event, visit http://www.OperationDryWater.org. California specific boating laws and safety tips may be found at www.BoatResponsibly.com.
From the City of South Lake Tahoe

From the Nevada Department of Wildlife:

Game wardens with the Nevada Department of Wildlife (NDOW), along with the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office and the National Park Service at Lake Mead National Recreation Area will be targeting boaters operating under the influence (OUI) this weekend in waters across the state as part of a nationally coordinated enforcement effort dubbed “Operation Dry Water.”

Operation Dry Water is an effort to coordinate increased patrols targeting drunken boaters.  Events will take place at waterways across the state, but extra efforts are being poured into Lake Tahoe in Northern Nevada and in Southern Nevada on lakes along the Colorado River System.  

"We’ve put together a truly regional effort this year," said Capt. David Pfiffner, Nevada’s Boating Law Administrator.  “We say it many times, drunken boating is dangerous.  People who operate under the influence are just as likely to kill an innocent bystander as him or herself, so stay sober while on the water.”

As part of the effort, NDOW will be moving extra officers from other parts of the state to focus on busy recreational waters, such as Lakes Mead and Mohave.  With low water in Northern Nevada, game wardens will focus specifically on Lake Tahoe.

“As recreational activity on Lake Tahoe increases, so must our efforts to raise awareness about the dangers of boating under the influence,” Washoe County Undersheriff Tim Kuzanek said.  “Participating in Operation Dry Water allows us to become part of an enormous multi-agency effort to make the waters safer for everyone who wants to enjoy this beautiful gem of the Sierra.”

Alcohol can impair a boater’s judgment, balance, vision, and reaction time.  It can increase fatigue and susceptibility to the effects of cold-water immersion. Sun, wind, noise, vibration, and motion, “stressors” common to the boating environment, intensify the side effects of alcohol, drugs, and some prescription medications, according to Pfiffner. United States Coast Guard statistics from 2008 reveal that 17 percent of all boat accident fatalities were a direct result of alcohol or drug use.      

“Drunk boating is drunk driving,” said Adam Kelsey, acting chief ranger, Lake Mead National Recreation Area. “We want visitors to have a fun, safe time on the lakes, but they need to be cognizant of the fact that summer heat can affect an individual’s response to alcohol, putting them over the legal limit much more quickly. Through Operation Dry Water, park rangers and our partners will be enforcing boating under the influence laws.”

Operation Dry Water, launched in 2009 by the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) in partnership with the United States Coast Guard, has been a highly successful effort to draw public attention to the hazards of OUI. Operation Dry Water is a joint program of NDOW, NASBLA and the U.S. Coast Guard.  More information is available at www.operationdrywater.org.

From the Nevada Department of Wildlife
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