As more boaters start to hit the water, the Whatcom County Sheriff’s Office says there will be more officers looking for people boating under the influence of drugs or alcohol this weekend, June 26-28.
It is illegal to operate a vessel in Washington with a blood alcohol content of .08 or higher — the same as operating a vehicle. Alcohol is the leading contributing factor in recreational boater deaths, according to the sheriff’s office.
“It is our job as law enforcement to identify and remove drunk or impaired boaters from the water, so that everyone else can continue to have an enjoyable boating season, and not become a victim of boating under the influence,” a sheriff’s office news release said.
The increased enforcement is part of a nationwide campaign called “Operation Dry Water.” Whatcom County deputies are participating in the campaign, along with thousands of agencies nationwide, to decrease the number of accidents and deaths due to drunk boaters.