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"Operation Dry Water" to raise awareness of the dangers of boating under the influence this Fourth of July weekend

For Immediate Release : Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office
Release Number: 20-175

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 "Operation Dry Water" to raise awareness of the dangers of boating under the influence this Fourth of July weekend

The Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office, along with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC), will participate in a three-day heightened awareness and enforcement weekend called, "Operation Dry Water."

"Operation Dry Water," which will take place July 3-5, 2020, is an annual campaign. Last year, the HCSO Marine Unit and FWC issued 17 citations and a total of five people were arrested for BUI. 51 vessel stops were also conducted to educate people on safe boating. 

Two signboards will be placed at the Williams Park Boat Ramp and the Riverview Civic Center and Boat Ramp to remind boaters of safer boating operations. 

Most recently, during a similar operation over the Memorial Day weekend, the HCSO Marine Unit and FWC issued 25 citations and 43 warnings to boaters stopped on the water. A total of seven people were arrested for BUI.

"I know the citizens of Hillsborough County and those in town visiting are excited to get out onto the water this Fourth of July holiday weekend," said Sheriff Chad Chronister. "I want to remind people that alcohol impairs people's judgment whether you're behind the wheel of a car or a vessel. Just as drinking while driving is illegal, boating while under the influence is also illegal."

According to the U.S. Coast Guard, alcohol is the leading contributing factor in recreational boating deaths and a major factor in accidents on the water.

You can learn more about safe boating by viewing Sheriff Chad Chronister's PSA here: http://youtu.be/m5BokcakDiE