By: KDKA-TV News Staff

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – The Fourth of July weekend is a popular time for boaters to enjoy Pittsburgh’s three rivers.

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It’s also a time of increased alcohol consumption which is why Pennsylvania is taking part in “Operation Dry Water” a nationwide campaign that kicks off July 2.

For three days, law enforcement will be on heightened alert for people boating while under the influence – or BUI.

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PennDOT says alcohol isn’t the only substance that boaters need to avoid.

“Many of these drugs are against the law and whether they’re prescription drugs or illegal drugs, they can be dangerous once you mix them with alcohol,” said Yasmeen Manyisha, PennDOT’s Safety Press Officer. “When you mix drugs and alcohol, the alcohol actually magnifies and you become even more impaired than you intended.”

“We want you to enjoy this weekend, utilize the water, but do it safely,” added Officer Mike Johnson of the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission.

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PennDOT also says that the number of drug-related crashes now surpasses alcohol-related crashes.