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Maryland Natural Resource Police Report Busy Holiday On Waterways And In State Parks
ANNAPOLIS — With the unpredictable weather during this three day July Fourth holiday weekend, the men and women of the Maryland Natural Resources Police (NRP) were kept busy making over 5,900 boating contacts on state waterways and over 5,000 public lands contacts.
“Operation Big Bang is another example of the commitment the Maryland Natural Resources Police has towards public safety and environmental conservation enforcement,” said Col. George F. Johnson IV, Superintendent of the NRP.
Operation Big Bang aggressively targeted boaters operating in a reckless or negligent manner and/or under the influence of alcohol on the waterways. The operation also focused on boaters not maintaining a proper lookout and not having the required safety equipment onboard. Patrols in state parks and forests targeted underage alcohol possession and individuals driving under the influence of alcohol, as well as the use of illegal fireworks and other criminal activity.
On the waterways, NRP checked 5,908 boaters and performed 3,205 vessel safety inspections over the holiday weekend. Officers issued 360 citations and 1,163 warnings on the state’s waterways. Twelve subjects were arrested for operating a vessel under the influence of alcohol (a 7.5 percent decrease from last year) and two for other criminal acts. NRP also investigated 14 boating accidents (a 6.5 percent decrease from last year) with no life threatening injuries.
In state parks, NRP made 5,189 public lands contacts, issued 152 citations and 259 warnings. Four individuals were arrested for operating a vehicle under the influence of alcohol and ten for other criminal acts. NRP investigated three accidents in state parks with no life threatening injuries.
July 7, 2008
Contact: Sgt. Ken Turner
The Maryland Natural Resources Police (NRP) is the enforcement arm of the Department of Natural Resources (DNR). With an authorized strength of 280 officers and a dedicated staff of civilian and volunteer personnel, the NRP provide a variety of services in addition to conservation and boating law enforcement duties throughout the State of Maryland. These services include homeland security, search and rescue, emergency medical services, education, information and communications services on a round the clock basis. NRP is the only police force aside from the Maryland State Police that has statewide jurisdiction.
The Maryland Department of Natural Resources is the state agency responsible for providing natural and living resource-related services to citizens and visitors. DNR manages nearly one-half million acres of public lands and 17,000 miles of waterways, along with Maryland's forests, fisheries and wildlife for maximum environmental, economic and quality of life benefits. A national leader in land conservation, DNR-managed parks and natural, historic and cultural resources attract 12 million visitors annually. DNR is the lead agency in Maryland's effort to restore the Chesapeake Bay, the state's number one environmental priority. Learn more at www.dnr.maryland.gov