CALCASIEU PARISH, LA (KPLC) - 'Operation Dry Water', a national effort put on by the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators to promote sober boating, started Friday. As a result of this operation being in effect, there will be a heavy presence from The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries on Calcasieu Lake.
While people can have their fun ahead of the fourth of July, boaters should know that drinking and boating can have serious consequences.
Louisiana sees driving a boat the same as driving a car, which means boaters who drink can receive a DWI.
According to Wildlife and Fisheries:
- First offense DWI is a $300 to $1,000 fine and up to six months in jail.
- Second offense DWI is a $750 to $1,000 and up to six months in jail.
- Third offense DWI is a $5,000 fine and between one and five years in jail.
"There's always the possibility of an incident on the water any time you have multiple vessels in a condensed area. When alcohol or drugs are brought into the situation, it increases it even further," Senior agent Luke Langley with Wildlife and Fisheries, said. "Studies show that a person with a blood alcohol concentration of .10% or higher is 10 times more likely to die in a fatal boating accident."
That's why boater and father Jason Webb stays sober on the water.
"If I were to drink and drive on a boat it would be the same as drinking and driving in a car and I'm not going to put my wife or kids in that situation," Webb said.
At the end of the day, Wildlife and Fisheries is there to keep everyone safe.
"We're passionate about safety, we want everyone to be safe out here and make it back home to their families every day and enjoy their time out here," Langley said.
'Operation Dry Water' is set to be in effect through the weekend.