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Sober Boaters are Safer Boaters

Sober Boaters are Safer Boaters
Nothing’s more invigorating than being out on the boat without a care in the world. However, the reality is that some boaters don’t have a care for your safety or their own, as they boat under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

Intense sun, winds, sea spray, vibration, and the rolling motion of a vessel create “boater’s fatigue,” a condition that mimics the effects of being under the influence in persons who are sober. Add in alcohol and/or certain legal and illegal drugs, which reduce sharpness of vision, balance, judgment, and reaction time, and a skipper quickly slips into being incapable of making proper decisions and spotting potential risks. As a portion of boaters have less experience and confidence operating a boat than they do driving a car, impairment can be even more dangerous for boaters than for drivers!

Alcohol use is the leading known contributing factor in fatal boating accidents — where the primary cause was known, it was listed by the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) as the leading factor in 17 percent of deaths. Yet there still persists an attitude with some irresponsible boat operators that alcohol and boating go hand-in-hand. They proclaim a right to kick back and imbibe, completely disregarding the consequences of their rash behavior. Boaters under the influence gamble with their own safety as well as others aboard; additionally, they threaten everyone unlucky enough to be in their vicinity on the water.

GRDA Police and other marine enforcement agencies are active all boating season to rid the waterways of intoxicated boaters. Boaters suspected of boating under the influence (BUI) will be stopped and arrested, not warned. Operating a boat with a blood alcohol content of .08 or higher is against federal law and Oklahoma state law.

Encounters with law enforcement may take place anytime you are on our lakes and rivers, as police are on the lookout for signs of intoxication day and night. Checkpoints will be set up without warning, and marine officers will administer sobriety tests as deemed warranted. In addition, vessels will be stopped if an officer observes possible violations of the navigation laws or deems a boat to be operating in an unsafe manner. For example, a vessel observed going too fast through a no-wake zone might end up with its operator arrested for alleged BUI.

It is illegal in every state and territory to operate a boat while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Depending on the jurisdiction, operators arrested for BUI face the same or similar consequences as those arrested and convicted for driving while intoxicated on land, possibly including jail time, loss of operating privileges, and seizure of the vessel. BUI laws pertain to all vessels, from canoes and rowboats to the largest ships. Every arrest incurs the expense of legal defense and a potential loss of wages.

Though not the object of law enforcement, alcohol also poses a danger to passengers. Being under the influence can lead to slips, falls overboard, and other dangerous accidents. It's just not worth the risk!

Shoreline Crew Gets Underway

Shoreline Crew Gets Underway

The new Shoreline Crew began their mission this month. Included on the team are Art Robbins, Luke Barker and Tyler Schlosser. Also pictured are Keet McGuire (rear left), GRDA Boat Mechanic and
Scott Horton (rear right),
GRDA Shoreline Management Compliance Officer.

 

GRDA made history recently by dedicating our first full-time crew of personnel to the mission of keeping our lakes and waterways safe and clean. The three member crew was recently hired to join our Shoreline Management Team of the Ecological Department of GRDA that are dedicated to the mission of maintaining a clean and safe environment on our waters. 
With over 660 miles of shoreline on Grand Lake alone, the need for a crew dedicated to maintaining our waterways in pristine condition is apparent. After months of planning, the Shoreline Crew has finally been put to work and will begin their duties by focusing on the maintenance and repair of navigation buoys on the lakes. The three person crew will take on a number of duties in conjunction with our Shoreline Management Team to help maintain the best possible environment at our lakes and rivers, plus ensure compliance with FERC and other federal regulations.
The GRDA Shoreline Crew will operate a fleet of equipment to include a drop-gate boat, barge and a platform equipped with a crane, as well as trucks, trailer and heavy equipment to help them complete their mission. Their duties will involve removal of debris, trash and foam from the shorelines as well as floating debris, dismantling dilapidated docks, and maintaining the hundreds of navigation buoys on our lakes. The crew will also be directly involved in working with the Adopt the Shoreline program that will be implemented soon on Grand Lake. Combined with the annual shoreline cleanup programs, our goal is to make the waters and shores of our lakes and rivers the cleanest, and healthiest environment in Oklahoma.
 

Back To School

Ba

Woodstock on the Water

Thunder Strikes at Wolf Creek

Portions of the Wolf Creek arm of Grand Lake, as well as the Wolf Creek boat ramp will be closed during the 5th Annual Thunder on Wolf Creek racing event held by the Oklahoma Boat Racing Association that will occur August 18, 19 and 20. However, during this time, area property owners will be allowed access to their private docks with proof of residency.
All vessel operators should watch for special event navigational buoys and officers that will be present in the area.
According to OBRA, the national race will feature dozens of boats in 24 heats running an oval course where spectators will be able to watch boats reaching speeds up to 90 miles per hour. The event is slated to include 50 racing teams and is expected to draw around 3,000 spectators. For more information, visit www.thunderonwolfcreek.com.

Do you have a Special Event Planned?

PLEASE let us know about your lake or river events so we can provide the resources you may need to make it a positive experience!

2017 Lake Events Schedule

  • Woodstock on the Water; August 12, Lawhead Hollow
  • Thunder on Wolf Creek: August 18, 19 & 20, Wolf Creek Ramp 
  • Rush For Brush: August 26, Lake Hudson
  • Scenic Rivers Operations Riverfest: September 9, Diamondhead Resort
  • 5K Sunset Dam Run: September 23, Disney

Broken Arrow Police Present "Share the Road" Civilian Motorcycle Course

Motorcycles are inexpensive to operate, fun to ride and easy to park. Unfortunately, many riders never learn the critical skills needed to ride safely. Motorcycling requires skill, concentration and reasonable precautions. Although it is possible to ride a motorcycle on your own, the trial and error method is a tough teacher of motorcycle skills.  

This FREE course is designed to teach experienced riders how to survive riding on our roadways. The course is taught by seasoned, police motorcycle officers that know what it takes to stay safe on a motorcycle!

By attending this course you will learn:  
• Effective turning 
• Obstacle avoidance 
• Braking maneuvers 
• Clutch control techniques 
• Traffic strategies 
• Proper protective equipment 
• Motorcycle maintenance
The FREE courses will be held on the following dates:
Sunday, September 10, 2017 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM Nienhuis Park, 3201 N. 9th Street, Broken Arrow  Sunday, September 17, 2017 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM Nienhuis Park, 3201 N. 9th Street, Broken Arrow
Additional details and registration can be found at: http://www.brokenarrowok.gov/494/Motorcycle-Safety-Course

Broken Arrow Police Present "Share the Road" Civilian Motorcycle Course

Motorcycles are inexpensive to operate, fun to ride and easy to park. Unfortunately, many riders never learn the critical skills needed to ride safely. Motorcycling requires skill, concentration and reasonable precautions. Although it is possible to ride a motorcycle on your own, the trial and error method is a tough teacher of motorcycle skills.  

This FREE course is designed to teach experienced riders how to survive riding on our roadways. The course is taught by seasoned, police motorcycle officers that know what it takes to stay safe on a motorcycle!

By attending this course you will learn:  
• Effective turning 
• Obstacle avoidance 
• Braking maneuvers 
• Clutch control techniques 
• Traffic strategies 
• Proper protective equipment 
• Motorcycle maintenance
The FREE courses will be held on the following dates:
Sunday, September 10, 2017 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM Nienhuis Park, 3201 N. 9th Street, Broken Arrow  Sunday, September 17, 2017 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM Nienhuis Park, 3201 N. 9th Street, Broken Arrow
Additional details and registration can be found at: http://www.brokenarrowok.gov/494/Motorcycle-Safety-Course

GRDA

Numbers to Call:

GRDA Police Dispatch                                                            918-256-0911
GRDA Ecosystems and Education Center                            918-782-4726
GRDA Lake Permits                                                                918-256-0852
                     E-mail: lakepermits@grda.com
GRDA Pensacola Dam Tours & Facility Information           918-256-0899

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