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SCPD Crackdown on DWI, BWI in Place Through Labor Day

Drivers and boaters will be subject to sobriety checkpoints; three already arrested early Friday.

Unless your idea of a good time is spending a night (or more) in jail this Labor Day, Suffolk County officials warned Friday that enforcement of driving and boating while intoxicated laws will be ramped up this holiday weekend. 

With the mangled wreckage of the Silver Bullet, the boat West Islip's Christopher Mannino was killed on in an drunk boating crash in June, just yards away, Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone said sobriety checkpoints will be in place on land and sea.  

"As we are about to kick off Labor Day weekend, we want to send a very clear and a very strong message to boaters and to drivers that if you make the decision to drink while driving a motor vehicle or driving a boat, you are putting yourself in jeopardy of this weekend of arrest," Bellone said during a press conference at the Suffolk County Police Department's Marine Bureau in Great River. 

The Marine Bureau conducted its first ever BWI checkpoint last weekend, checking 23 vehicles and making two arrests, SCPD Commissioner Edward Webber said. 

So far this year, there have been 15 arrests, which is more than 2009, 2010 and 2011 combined, Webber said. 

"As the summer ends, we are asking residents to make responsible decisions, he said. 

Besides checkpoints, there will also be DWI saturation patrol and an enhanced motorcycle enforcement initiative, both funded by grant money, in place this weekend, officials said. 

Three people were  at a checkpoint in Huntington Station early Friday morning for DWI and police officials said they will provide the media with the names of those arrested over the weekend. 

"Sadly, there will be those who will not heed the county executive's warning," Suffolk County Police Chief of Department James Burke said. "For those of you who do that, you very well may be among the list of people we release to the media on Tuesday and wind up spending your Labor Day in jail."

Living in Brookhaven September 23, 2012 at 02:20 PM
John Gruber- Im not sure if you were referring to me but I don't drink when I boat. The same way i don't drink when I drive. My passengers are welcome to drink as long as it is not excess in my eyes. I am responsible for everyone on that craft as long as they are on my boat. RESPONSIBLE, without the need of government intervention. Thanks
John Gruber September 23, 2012 at 02:23 PM
It doesn't matter who else is drinking, as long as the operator of the boat isn't. it's just like driving a car, you're responsible for other people's safety and should not be drunk when given these responsibilities. only an complete moron who has no respect for other's safety is ok with letting drunken boaters roam free on the water. Here's a news flash, our way saves lives, your way risks lives. which do you think is the smarter choice
Concerned September 23, 2012 at 02:27 PM
Many countries have zero tolerance for drinking and driving. Zero. The US should as well. The thought that you can drink up to a specified limit and then drive is stupid at best. Remember the NYS limit is .8 UNLESS you are involved in an accident then its .4 God forbid someone is killed then the charges are manslaughter, even if its truly an accident and perhaps you are not at fault.
Living in Brookhaven September 23, 2012 at 02:34 PM
Ill tell you what is smarter... Reading. My original comment was based off of John K.Massaro saying that an open container on a boat should equal a DWAI on land even if operator wasent drinking. I believe in DWI and BWI laws, but giving me a ticket because someone else is drinking is flat out stupid.
John Gruber September 23, 2012 at 02:58 PM
I was just referring to comments on rules and the fact that rules are necessary. if we could govern ourselves we wouldn't need police at all which isn't the case

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