Cloudy skies and rain in the forecast didn’t make for an ideal Labor Day to be out cruising the waters — but weather didn’t stop game wardens from patrolling our area’s lakes to make sure those who were out there this holiday were being safe.
Ed Christie, District Game Warden says, “Some of the things we’re looking for for safety equipment is some type of signal device in case you get stranded, fire extinguishers in case there’s a fire on board, life jackets that are in good condition”
Christie says between 6 and 12 people drown every year from not wearing life jackets.
District Game Warden Adrian Marquis says, “They have to have life jackets in the boat for everyone on board and anybody under 10 has to be wearing them but we would like to encourage people to wear their life jackets regardless of their age”
And one of their biggest concerns as always – is boating under the influence. Christie says they have wrote several O.U.I. tickets this season. For the most part though, folks out on the water have been following the rules.
Marquis says, “We’ve checked a lot of these people over and over again and its to the point now where they pretty much know everything they need to have in the boat to be legal and safe.”
Now towards the end of the summer – with the air and water BOTH getting colder – wardens say if anyone were to get ejected from a boat, they could get hypothermia.
Christie says, “People might think they’re a real strong swimmer, but it doesn’t take long to get fatigued in this cold water its only 67 degrees today, that’s the water temperature.”
These guys say though boating activity out on the lake has slowed down, as long as they see people on the water, they’ll continue doing checks. They add that if you’re going to go to a remote body of water, make sure you let someone know.