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June 23, 2016

OPERATION DRY WATER - June 24 thru June 26






June 24th thru 26th



Williston, VT - Beginning Friday June 24th and running through Sunday June 26th, the Vermont State Police Marine Division, Grand Isle Sheriff, Colchester Police Marine Patrol, and the Burlington US Coast Guard station, will participate in the national Operation Dry Water campaign. This is a national campaign that occurs annually to promote safe and sober boating as we enter the boating season.  The campaign hopes to reduce the numbers of boating while intoxicated (BWI) incidents by increasing awareness and recreational boater education, along with visible police deterrents. In Vermont, we are entering the main boating season, with the most activity associated with the weeks around the 4th of July holiday.


Operation Dry Water lists a number of reasons for this effort:


  • Operation Dry Water focuses on spreading awareness of the danger of boating under the influence to the recreational boating public through the outreach efforts of NASBLA, the U.S. Coast Guard, participating law enforcement agencies nationwide and our partners.
  • With alcohol use remaining the leading contributing factor in recreational boater deaths, the mission of the ODW campaign and of those who support it is to change the cultural acceptance of drinking and boating and help boaters have safe and fun recreational boating experiences.
  • The outreach and media coverage leading up to the enforcement weekend lends law enforcement agencies the opportunity to educate and inform the recreational boating public about the dangers and implications of boating under the influence in your state.

Since the launch of Operation Dry Water in 2009, the number of boating fatalities with alcohol named as a contributing factor has decreased from 19 percent to 16 percent of all boating fatalities reported in the United States. (National statistics are available in the Operation Dry Water press kit. A link is included below).  However, alcohol use continues to be the leading known contributing factor in recreational boating deaths in the United States.  Vermont has experienced 11 boating deaths in the last 10 years.  The enforcement campaign during Operation Dry Water is integral in the effort to prevent these deaths.


  • The purpose of the heightened enforcement component of the Operation Dry Water campaign is to deter boaters from boating under the influence of drugs or alcohol. When boaters choose to boat impaired they are endangering not only themselves but the many other boaters on the water as well.
  • Just as they do on the road, law enforcement officers keep us safe in many ways on the water. This heightened enforcement weekend facilitates an opportunity for officers in your community to remove impaired operators from the waterways and to inform and educate boaters about the dangers and implications of boating under the influence in your state.

Operation Dry Water was launched in 2009 by the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) in partnership with the United States Coast Guard.


An Operation Dry Water press kit is available here.


Please contact Vermont State Police Marine Division Corporal Kevin Mays for further information at 802-878-7111 extension 2014.






Scott Waterman

Vermont State Police Public Information Officer

802-241-5277 desk

802-279-4554 cell




Scott Waterman

Vermont State Police Public Information Officer

802-241-5277 desk

802-279-4554 cell