NEWS RELEASE #: 16-131
The Sarasota County Sheriff's Office has the results of its participation in Operation Dry Water, a national Boating Under the Influence (BUI) awareness and enforcement campaign conducted locally on waterways and at boat ramps in Englewood, Nokomis and Venice over the weekend.
Over the three day operation, deputies increased patrols, life jacket checks and boater education. Alcohol limits are the same on the water as on the road, so anyone boating with a .08 breath alcohol concentration (BAC) or above, can be arrested.
Marine Patrol deputies made 25 vessel stops to conduct safety checks, and issued 32 verbal/written boating safety warnings and 2 citations.
There was also one BUI arrest during the operation. A vessel was stopped for violation of a slow speed manatee zone (operating a vessel on plane outside the channel marker). When deputies made contact with the vessel, the operator showed signs of impairment. A field sobriety test revealed the BAC of the operator was .23, nearly three times the legal limit. Also onboard the vessel was an adult female and two children, ages 1 and 2.
While Operation Dry Water is complete, Marine Patrol deputies will continue to be vigilant and increase patrols throughout the Fourth of July holiday weekend.