Iowa Department of Natural Resource officials are stepping up efforts to catch intoxicated boaters on the state’s waterways. Susan Stocker is the boating law administrator and education coordinator for the Iowa DNR.
The 95 arrests last year compared to 55 in 2011 and 40 arrests in 2010. This weekend, DNR law enforcement officers are taking part in a national campaign called “Operation Dry Water.” Stocker says the officers will increase patrols, conduct check points, and administer breath tests. She believes too many boat operators don’t recognize how dangerous drinking and boating can be.
During the Operation Dry Water campaign last year, officers in Iowa contacted nearly 550 vessels, resulting in 136 citations or warnings. The 2012 effort was conducted on the Mississippi River Pool 15, the Coralville Reservoir, Saylorville Reservoir, North Twin Lake, Storm Lake and the Missouri River.