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13 impaired boaters arrested over Memorial Day weekend in Southwest Florida

Posted at 1:51 PM, May 29, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-29 13:51:05-04

LEE COUNTY, Fla. -- Memorial Day weekend is always a popular time to go boating in Southwest Florida, and Florida Fish and Wildlife did their duty to keep careless and impaired boaters off the water.

FWC says 13 arrests were made for boating under the influence of alcohol or drugs (BUI) in Lee, Charlotte, Sarasota and Manatee Counties.

BUI is a misdemeanor offense and those arrested are taken to jail. If found guilty, those arrested can end up with fines up to $1,000 plus court costs, and even jail time for a first offense.

Alcohol or drug use has been found be a factor in 19% of fatal boating accidents in Florida last year.

The FWC encourages boaters to have a designated operator when spending the day out on the water. For more information about boating safety, visit