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The Canadian Safe Boating Council and Barrie Police Service Team Up to Reduce Impaired Boating Deaths This August Long Weekend

The Canadian Safe Boating Council and Barrie Police Service Team Up to Reduce Impaired Boating Deaths This August Long Weekend
July 31st, 2017 - Police & the Community

Drinking and boating accounts for approximately 40% of boating-related fatalities on Canadian waterways.  To raise awareness and reduce alcohol related deaths, the Barrie Police Service is joining the Canadian Safe Boating Council (CSBC) to launch year 5 of an initiative called “Operation Dry Water”  It’s goal is to discourage this dangerous practice.

With the summer boating season in high gear, the August long weekend is the perfect time to remind Canadian boaters about the risks of impaired boating.  Combined with sun, wind, waves and the rocking motion of the boat, the effects of alcohol on the water can be greatly increased.

The CSBC and the Barrie Police Service would like, through this initiative, to raise attention to the problem of boating under the influence and to remind boaters not to drink and boat. 

Operation Dry Water will focus on the potential risks of impaired boating, and remedies that are currently in place to discourage it.

Federal statutes dictate that, whether or not your craft is motorized, you can be charged with Impaired Operation of a vessel under the Criminal Code of Canada if your blood alcohol level exceeds the .08 threshold.   This means you can be charged even if you are impaired while operating a canoe and a judge is able to, upon conviction, suspend your boating privileges but that’s not all.  In the eyes of the law, impaired boating, like impaired operation of a motor vehicle, is a criminal offence that can have repercussions far beyond the loss of your boating privileges.

Operation Dry Water is aimed at reducing the number of alcohol-related accidents and fatalities on the water while fostering a stronger and more visible deterrent to alcohol use while boating. The end goal? To achieve safer and more enjoyable recreational boating. 

This initiative is made possible through support of Transport Canada’s Office of Boating Safety. 

For further information on the Canadian Safe Boating Council contact:

Ian Gilson
Director – Canadian Safe Boating Council
905-719-5152
igilson@rogers.com