According to a press release, Colonel J. Bret Johnson, superintendent of the Missouri State Highway Patrol, has announced the Patrol's participation in Operation Dry Water. Operation Dry Water is a national campaign in which marine law enforcement officers from across the country coordinate special patrols during the last weekend in June to keep our waterways safe from boaters operating under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Troopers will focus their efforts this weekend, June 24-26, to detect and apprehend impaired operators.

Missouri boat operators found to have a blood alcohol content of .08% or greater will be arrested for boating while intoxicated. Intoxicated boat operators endanger themselves, their passengers, and other boaters utilizing our many waterways.

Last year, 582 local, state, and federal agencies participated in a weekend long event of heightened BWI enforcement known as Operation Dry Water. Officers removed 278 intoxicated boat operators from the water. In addition, law enforcement officers made contact with over 125,087 boaters concerning BWI or boating safety enforcement and awareness. From 2010 to 2015, over 1,870 BWI operators have been removed from the water by law enforcement officers during the Operation Dry Water weekends.

In 2015, during less than desirable boating weather, troopers arrested a total of three people statewide for boating while intoxicated, contacted 543 vessels and 1,531 boaters, and issued 85 boating violation summonses and 588 warnings on Missouri waterways. Marine operations troopers also issued 137 summonses for non-boating violations during the 2015 Operation Dry Water weekend. Special enforcement operations will continue throughout the summer months. Boaters are reminded that designating a sober operator is always the safest bet if alcohol is going to be included in their boating experience.

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