Three boaters face impaired driving charges following patrols by Peterborough County OPP in recent days.
On Saturday, OPP were on marine patrol on Crystal Lake in the Municipality of Trent Lakes north of Peterborough when they stopped two boaters and determined both operators were under the influence of alcohol.
A 26-year-old man from Waterdown, Ont., and a 30-year-old man from Burlington, Ont., were each charged with impaired driving (blood-alcohol concentration 80-plus).
Also on July 20, police say officers received a complaint of a suspected impaired boater at Lock 23 of the Trent-Severn Waterway. They located a 34-foot vessel on the Otonabee River and determined its operator was impaired by alcohol.
A 64-year-old man from Tay Valley Township, Ont., was charged with two counts of impaired driving (alcohol and blood-alcohol concentration 80-plus).
Each boat operator charged had their driver’s licence suspended for 90 days.
They’ll each appear in court in Peterborough on Aug. 29.
Last week Global News joined the OPP marine unit on Chemong Lake. The unit patrols more than 65 lakes in the region.
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Const. Mike Gravelle estimates that on “busy” days, police will check between 30 and 40 vessels for impaired driving, proper safety equipment and licensing.
OPP have partnered with Mothers Against Drunk Driving to bolster the message about the dangers of impaired boating.
“People are losing their mothers, their fathers, their sisters, their family members because of the choice of an impaired boater,” said Lesely Kirton, a MADD community leader in Peterborough.
During a patrol of Chemong Lake north of Peterborough on Friday, Gravelle reflected on a tragic boating incident on the same lake early in his policing career.
“I dealt with a very tragic incident where a boater had too much to drink,” he said. “He took out three docks and sadly, lost his own life.”
— with files from Germain Ma/Global News Peterborough
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