By land or sea: Law enforcement urges sober driving this holiday weekend

JPD and USCG will be working hard to keep Juneau safe.

Law enforcement agencies in Juneau and across the state announced they will be making a major push this weekend to interdict drunken drivers in any form for the Fourth of July weekend.

“With the beautiful weather forecast over the 3rd and 4th of July weekend, the Juneau Police Department anticipates a lot of people will be participating in the holiday festivities,” said Juneau Police Department Lt. Krag Campbell in a news release. “This often comes with an increased volume of police related calls for service. JPD will have extra staff working the evening of the 3rd through the early morning hours of the 5th.”

JPD will be increasing its uniformed presence downtown and enforcing driving under the influence regulations, Campbell said. The reward for information submitted through the Juneau Crime Line leading to DUI arrests has also been doubled to $400. That doubling will be in effect from July 3 to July 5. And it’s not just automobile operators that are being monitored.

2019 boating deaths, injuries in Alaska down from previous years

“Every year in the United States we see boating accidents that could have been prevented had alcohol or drug use not been involved,” said Chief Warrant Officer Thad Wagner with the Coast Guard Sector Anchorage Enforcement Division. “Along with our partner law enforcement agencies and boating safety partners, we’ll be out to be there to ensure boaters are operating safely and in accordance with law.”

The Coast Guard will be supporting an initiative to reduce alcohol and drug-related boating incidents on the water. Last year, the nationwide initiative resulted in 563 arrests across the country for boating under the influence and more than 35,000 citations and warnings.

“Alcohol use continues to be the leading known contributing factor in recreational boating-related deaths (19 percent in 2018; 23 percent in 2019),” reads the District 17 press release. “Operating a boat with a blood alcohol content of .08 or higher is against federal law and most state laws.”

Penalties for BUIs include fines, jail time and loss of boating or driving privileges, according to the release.

Campbell also encouraged people to be safe and follow City and Borough of Juneau ordinances concerning the use of fireworks. Fireworks are allowed from 10 a.m. to 1 a.m. July 3-4, and 10 a.m. to midnight on July 4. Violation of these regulations is subject to a $300 fine and a citation.

Juneau Crime Line

The crime line can be called anonymously at 907.523.7700 or at http://juneaucrimeline.com.

• Contact reporter Michael S. Lockett at 757.621.1197 or lockett@juneauempire.com.

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