Authorities watching for drunk boaters on Nevada waterways

California and Nevada authorities will be on the lookout for drunken boaters this weekend as part of Operation Dry Water.

“Alcohol use is a leading contributing factor in recreational boater deaths, and is one of the top reasons for recreational boating accidents in general,” said Nevada Game Warden Capt. David Pfiffner, Nevada’s boating law administrator.

The Nevada Department of Wildlife will have officers on every major body of water across the state, and other law enforcement agencies are adding extra officers to many waterways in other parts of the state.

Douglas County’s Marine 7 will be out on the lake as part of the effort to detect impaired boaters and educate the public about boating under the influence.

In 2017, the leading cause of boater deaths, 19 percent, were attributed to alcohol use.

“Every boat operator makes a conscious choice when they decide to drink and operate a vessel,” said Pfiffner. “Boating under the influence is a 100 percent preventable crime. The purpose of Operation Dry Water is to encourage boaters to stay sober while boating.”

Use or possession of fireworks on Forest Service land can be a costly prospect any time of year, and increases fire risk.

“Setting off fireworks in the forest is not only illegal, it is also a hazardous activity that can lead to injury and wildfires,” said Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest Fire Management Officer Russell Bird. “We want visitors to come out and enjoy their public lands, but leave the fireworks at home.” Bird encourages forest visitors to check with local communities for fireworks displays.

The use or possession of fireworks on public lands is subject to confiscation and fines of up to $5,000 and/or six months in jail. In addition, anyone found responsible for starting a wildfire can be held civilly and criminally liable.

The Independence Day holiday tends to draw visitors from across the West to Lake Tahoe and western Nevada, increasing the number of pedestrians, bicyclists and motorists on the roads.

Hikers in Mono County have kept that jurisdiction’s search and rescue team busy.

On Monday morning a 25-year-old woman had to be hauled off the Crag near Crystal Lake in Mammoth Lakes after a rock came loose and hit her ankle.

Mono County Search and Rescue team members met her friend and fellow climbers and took her to Mammoth Hospital for treatment. It was the second time in a week searchers came to the aid of an injured hiker. A 70-year-old woman suffered a dislocated hip while hiking in Sky Meadows near Emerald Lake on June 19.


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