As a part of Operation Dry Water, a nationwide campaign to enforce safer boating, the Missouri State Water Patrol conducted five sobriety check points throughout the state over the weekend, June 26 through 28.
The check points were in conjunction with a nationwide campaign, "Operation Dry Water," that 49 other states and U.S. territories participated in. The goal of the campaign is to raise awareness of and to decrease the incidence of intoxicated operation of vessels.
Check points were conducted at Lake of the Ozarks, Table Rock Lake, Mark Twain Lake, Pomme De Terre Lake and Smithville Lake.
Law enforcement officers stopped 343 boats and arrested 17 boat operators for boating while intoxicated. Seventeen other citations were issued for equipment violations and 62 warnings were issued.
Officers were checking boat safety equipment in conjunction with field sobriety tests, making sure flares, fire extinguishers, personal safety devices and sounding devices, such as air horns, were in accordance with the legal specifications.
There was one drowning this weekend at the Lake of the Ozarks "Party Cove," and authorities believe alcohol consuption might have been a contributing factor. It’s a situation that drives home the importance of knowing the limits while mixing water with alcohol, says Sgt. Jerry Callahan, spokesman for the Missouri Water Patrol.
Todd Cornine, 33, of Richmond, never resurfaced after jumping from a boat into the water Saturday. The Water Patrol dragged the area and his body was recovered about an hour later, about 9 p.m. Saturday.