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Boat sober or Colorado Parks and Wildlife's Operation Dry Water will get you pulled over

Operation Dry Water: CPW increasing patrols on Colorado's waters for holiday weekend
Posted at 4:06 PM, Jul 03, 2024

COLORADO — Boaters looking to get out on the water this holiday weekend will come across extra CPW officers looking to enforce boating under the influence laws as a part of Operation Dry Water.

This enforcement operation is closely timed to July 4 every year to educate boaters on the dangers of boating under the influence and reduce the number of waterway accidents.

Dangers of boating under the influence include:

  • Alcohol can impair judgment, balance, vision, and reaction time
  • Using alcohol can increase fatigue during cold water immersion
  • Sun, wind, noise, vibration and motion are all intensified by the effects of alcohol, drugs and some medications
  • One drink on land is the same as three drinks on water
  • Alcohol can also be dangerous to passengers as it can cause slips, falls overboard and other dangerous accidents

Operation Dry Water will include increased patrols and checkpoints.

CPW increases patrols for Operation Dry Water

Penalties for boating under the influence include:

  • fines
  • impounding your boat
  • potential jail time
  • losing boat privileges

Boaters found with a blood alcohol content level above the .08 state limit will be arrested for BUI.
In Colorado, boaters must also consider unpredictable
weather while on the water. Dangerous weather conditions, like strong wind gusts, can knock a paddleboarder or kayaker into the cold water.

Boating and Water Safety
CPW officers are currently writing $100+ tickets for boaters and paddlers who are not wearing life jackets.

If you don't own a life jacket, then click here to read about the CPW life-jacket loaner program or visit on of the following life jacket loaner stations:

  • Rifle Gap
  • Harvey Gap
  • Chatfield
  • Mancos
  • Navajo
  • Barr Lake
  • Highline
  • Trinidad Lake
  • Stagecoach
  • Eleven Mile
  • Spinney
  • North Sterling
  • AHRA
  • Boyd Lake
  • Jake M Robb Corn Lake
  • Jake M Robb Connected Lakes
  • James M Robb Fruita
  • Cherry Creek State Park
  • Lake Miramonte
  • Steamboat Lake
  • Pearl Lake
  • Ridgway
  • Sweitzer
  • Paonia
  • Crawford
  • Dan Noble SWA (Miramonte Reservoir)

For more information about boat and water safety, click here.
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