As recreational boating traffic increases ahead of the Independence Day holiday, law enforcement will be on the lookout for individuals boating under the influence.
As part of the national Operation Dry Water campaign, the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection and Environmental Conservation Police are focused on educating boaters about safe boating practices, which include boating sober, and enforcing the state’s boating under the influence laws.
Operating a vessel under the influence of alcohol or drugs is illegal on all bodies of water in Connecticut and New York. In both states it is illegal to operate a vessel with a blood alcohol concentration level of .08 or higher – the same as it is to operate a motor vehicle.
According to the Coast Guard, alcohol was the leading contributing factor in recreational boating deaths last year, and a major contributor to accidents. The 2017 U.S. Coast Guard Recreational Boating Statistics show that between 2013 to 2017, there were 35 boating accidents in Connecticut, 23 of which resulted in 24 deaths.