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Be careful on the water this weekend

June 26, 2009 at 02:45 PM

SPRINGFIELD - The Illinois Department of Natural Resources is alerting recreational boaters that Conservation Police Officers (CPOs) will be out in full force this weekend. CPOs will be on the look-out for boaters operating under the influence of drugs or alcohol as part of a national coordinated effort of stepped-up enforcement known as Operation Dry Water.

“We want people to have fun, but at the same time to be safe out on the water,” said IDNR Office of Law Enforcement Chief Rafael Gutierrez.  “Alcohol use is one of the leading factors in fatal recreational boating accidents nationwide.  We recommend that all boat operators have a designated skipper on board.”

Impaired boaters caught this weekend can expect severe penalties.  In Illinois, operating under the influence (OUI) is a Class “A” misdemeanor for the first offense. It is punishable by a maximum of six months to one year in jail and/or up to $2,500 in fines.

“Our Conservation Police Officers work hard throughout the year to make sure boaters are safe on Illinois public waters,” said Chief Gutierrez. “We have zero tolerance for anyone found operating a boat under the influence at any time; however, boaters will see a stepped up effort as we approach the Fourth of July holiday.”

Operation Dry Water is a joint program of IDNR, the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA), and the U.S. Coast Guard.  For more information you can log on to http://www.operationdrywater.org or www.dnr.state.il.us

Your CommentsComments :: Terms :: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

So one gets more jail time for boating under the influence than running over a pedestrian and killing him in your ‘5,000 Bentley because you were trying to beat a traffic light?? Just asking that’s all.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 06/26 at 10:17 PM

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