Published: Jun 27, 2013 10:26 AM EDT
Updated: Jun 27, 2013 10:59 AM EDT

PUNTA GORDA, Fla.- The Charlotte County Sheriff's Office will be participating in Operation Dry Water June 28 to 30 as part of a nationally coordinated effort to reduce the number of accidents and fatalities related to boating under the influence (BUI). The mission of Operation Dry Water also brings awareness and education to recreational boaters about the dangers of alcohol and drug use on the water.

During the operation, officers will be out in force looking for boaters whose blood alcohol content (BAC) exceeds the state limit of 0.08. This weekend will include increased patrols, Breathalyzer tests, as well as boater education. Impaired boaters can expect to be arrested or face other serious penalties. In Florida the consequences for BUI include fines, jail and loss of boating or even driving privileges.

Operation Dry Water is a nationwide education and enforcement initiative launched by the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) in 2009 in partnership with the U.S. Coast Guard.

Operation Dry Water 2013 is a joint program of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, the Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office, the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators and the U.S. Coast Guard. For more information, visit www.operationdrywater.org.