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Game Wardens Wrap Up Busy July Fourth

Texas Game Wardens Wrap up Another Busy July Fourth Weekend of Statewide Enforcement.

AUSTIN— As Texans hit the waterways across the state to recognize July fourth, Texas Game Wardens were out in force to ensure everyone stayed safe on the water.

“Texas Game Wardens partnered with thousands of law enforcement agencies nationwide for Operation Dry Water. They focused on impacts of alcohol on boaters during high-traffic weekends like July fourth,” said Cody Jones, Assistant Commander for Marine Enforcement with the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. “These efforts are represented in our work during the July 4th weekend.”

In addition to issuing 1,560 citations and 1,976 warnings for various boating safety law violations, wardens arrested 49 individuals for Boating While Intoxicated (BWI). In addition, they filed eight other charges for Driving While Intoxicated (DWI). Additionally, they arrested another 23 people for various violations.

Texas Game Wardens also conducted multiple searches and rescues over the holiday weekend. Additionally, they assisted with 38 reportable boating accidents at several Texas lakes and rivers.

Game wardens were involved statewide with numerous waterway assists or other incidents.

In Hunt County, game wardens responded to a reported drowning in the swim beach at West Tawakoni City Park. They airlifted the patient in critical condition, but they now should make a full recovery.

Willacy County game wardens conducted a boating rescue just outside Port Mansfield Harbor. A recreational vessel capsized within the intercoastal waterway into Port Mansfield. Game wardens rescued four occupants in the water without personal floatation devices (PFDs). They took all occupants safely to shore without injuries. 

Game wardens patrolling South Padre Island encountered a boat with too many people on board. When wardens approached to conduct a safety check, the vessel took water over the bow, and three passengers fell off. No one was injured, and all the passengers made it to land. 

Texas Game Wardens also dealt with one boating fatality and ten open-water fatalities on Texas waterways over the Independence Day weekend. The boating-related fatality occurred on Canyon Lake. Open-water fatality locations included Lake Ray Hubbard, West Galveston Bay, Lake Houston, Lake Conroe, Guadalupe River, Lake Travis, Lake Texana, Canyon Lake, and the Gulf of Mexico.