Montoursville, PA - The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT), the Community Traffic Safety Project, the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC) and Tiadaghton Valley Regional Police Department (TVRPD) today met at Crystal Beverage in Jersey Shore to promote safe driving and boating during an Independence Day Impaired Driving Mobilization beginning Friday, June 23 through July 5, 2017.
Participants discussed regional DUI patrols both on and off the water as part of this year’s impaired driving mobilization which runs from June 23 through July 4. As part of the campaign, TVRPD distributed “Boating Under the Influence-What do you know?” posters to area businesses that are patronized by river lot campers and visitors.
The Independence Day weekend is the busiest period of the boating season as well as the most dangerous on the waterways.
Under Pennsylvania law, boat operators can be arrested for BUI while operating any watercraft if they are incapable of safe operation regardless of any blood alcohol concentration (BAC).
Waterways Conservation Officer Emmett Kyler noted “The penalties for an individual convicted of BUI are very similar to the DUI penalties with the exception an individual will lose their boat operating privileges as opposed to their driver’s license. This is always a huge misconception.”
Per PennDOT data, last year there were 2,887 vehicle crashes resulting in 21 fatalities during the Independence Day Holiday from Friday, July 1, to Sunday, July 10. Of those fatalities, eight were attributed to a drinking driver and four were attributed to a drugged driver.
PennDOT encourages drivers to plan ahead by either designating a sober driver or arranging for alternate transportation.
MEDIA CONTACT: Kim Smith, PennDOT, 570-368-4344