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Washoe County Sheriffs Office Participating in Operation Dry Water

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slider_2-555x227-5215922-4129439With summer upon us, people are flocking to Lake Tahoe, Pyramid Lake, and other lakes in the area. Unfortunately, with boating also tends to come drinking, and too many lives have been lost due to people boating while under the influence of drugs and alcohol.

Boating under the influence is against the law in Nevada. U.S. Coast Guard data from past years shows alcohol use to be 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.

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 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.

Always wear a life jacket while boating. Eighty-five percent of people who drowned in a recreational boating accident were not wearing a life jacket.

Take a boating safety course. In accidents where the operator’s instruction history was known, 73 percent of fatalities occurred on boat where the operator had not received any boating instruction.

Get a free vessel check every year. These checks reveal life-threatening problems even on boats owned by safe, responsible boaters.

Throughout the weekend of June 26 through 28, Washoe County Sheriff’s Deputies will be on the water at Lake Tahoe aboard Washoe County Marine 9. Deputies will be looking for signs of impaired boating and talking to boaters about the dangers of operating a motorized vessel under the influence.

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