NEBRASKA – As part of a national effort to reduce the number of accidents and deaths related to boating under the influence, the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission will participate in Operation Dry Water during the Fourth of July weekend. While Operation Dry Water is a year-round BUI awareness and enforcement campaign, that effort will be heightened by Game and Parks’ Law Enforcement Division officers at waters across the state that weekend.
Alcohol use while boating is one of the leading factors in boater deaths. In Nebraska, it is unlawful to operate a motorboat with a blood alcohol level content of .08 percent or greater. Doing so constitutes BUI, which carries penalties such as vessel impoundment, fines, jail time and loss of boating privileges. Jeff Clauson, the Boating Law Administrator for Game and Parks, says that checking your boat is important too.
Make sure that you have most of the equipment or all of the equipment that you need. You have a life jacket for everybody. Children under 13 and anyone on a personal watercraft need to wear it. They’re required by law to wear their life jacket. And people being towed by a boat, on skis or a tube, also have to wear a life jacket. Make sure you have a bailing bucket, a fire extinguisher, a sound producing device, all those other things you need to have, a paddle.
They also recommend you have an orange flag on the boat if you are pulling someone. Anyone operating a motorboat or personal watercraft must be at least 14 years old.