Brendan Weber

Coast Guard Stepping Up Boating Safety Patrols

The U.S. Coast Guard is beefing up boating safety patrols throughout the Bay Area this Fourth of July holiday weekend to make sure boating under the influence laws are enforced, agency officials said.

As part of a national effort called Operation Dry Water, members of the Coast Guard will be boarding boats in the San Francisco Bay and elsewhere to check for boating under the influence, a spokeswoman said.

"The Coast Guard is going to be out there making sure everybody is safe on the water," said Coast Guard Lt. Megan Mervar. She said boating under the influence, or boating while intoxicated, is just as dangerous as drinking and driving.

It is illegal to operate a boat while under the influence of alcohol or drugs in every state, according to the Coast Guard.

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