Washoe County Sheriff’s Office Participating in Operation Dry Water to Enhance Boating Safety This Fourth of July

Jul 1, 2024

From July 4th to 6th, 2024, Washoe County Sheriff’s Office deputies will be aboard Marine 9 at Lake Tahoe as part of Operation Dry Water, a national awareness and enforcement campaign focused on reducing the number of alcohol and drug-related incidents and fatalities on the water. The initiative aims to create a stronger, more visible deterrent to alcohol and drug use while boating.

Operation Dry Water is held annually near the Fourth of July holiday, a time known for increased boating activity and alcohol use, leading to subsequent boating incidents and fatalities. U.S. Coast Guard data from 2022 reveals that alcohol use remains the primary known contributing factor to recreational boater deaths.

Deputies will be vigilant in looking for signs of impaired boating and educating boaters about the dangers of operating a motorized vessel while under the influence. Alcohol not only impairs a boater’s judgment, balance, vision, and reaction time, but it can also increase fatigue and susceptibility to the effects of cold water immersion. Common stressors in the boating environment, such as sun, wind, noise, vibration, and motion, can intensify the side effects of alcohol and drugs.

The Washoe County Sheriff’s Office has participated in Operation Dry Water for sixteen years to raise awareness about the dangers of boating under the influence, aiming to ensure everyone’s safety. Stay safe, enjoy the water, and never boat under the influence.

Sergeant Kristin Vietti

Public Information Officer