SC DNR gears up for Memorial Day weekend on Lakes | Sports & Recreation
YORK COUNTY, SC (WBTV)- Memorial Day weekend, time to dust off the old boat and hit the lake, but this weekend has been known in the past to be a deadly weekend on the water.
"Memorial Day weekend is the start of the 100 deadliest days of summer," said Officer Shawn Hanna with SCDNR.
Hanna says officers will be out on the lakes this Memorial Day weekend to look for un-safe boaters.
Officer Hanna says they're giving boaters a chance to do the right thing first before casting off.
Three things you need to know to have a safe weekend the first one's pretty simple, wear a life jacket.
"75 to 80 percent of all fatal accidents on the water could've been prevented by wearing a life jacket," said Hanna.
Number two, help out your Captain and keep a look out for other boats.
"Not everybody out there is paying attention to what's in front of them, they're looking around to what's inside the boat watching the kids watching the skier, and they don't see that boat they ‘re about to hit," said Hanna.
Third, if you've been drinking too much find a designated driver because there is such a thing called a BUI.
"In the local area we've already made four Boating Under the Influence arrests, and the boating season hasn't even officially started State wide," said Hanna. "There's already been four fatalities on the water this year."
There were 19 deaths on water ways in South Carolina last year.
To help prevent such deaths SC DNR are giving free courtesy boat inspections at some area boat landings.
Boaters will I need a throw floatation cushion, a horn, bell or whistle. Also boaters need a fire extinguisher and a life jacket for everyone on the boat.
"If there is something you're missing you're not getting a ticket you're not getting a warning we'll give you a chance to run back to the store and pick up that extra life jacket or fire extinguisher," said Hanna.
Hanna says that deal is just for this Memorial Day weekend at the safety inspection sites.
Officer Hanna says if you get stopped out on the water by officers they're not trying to ruin your weekend, they're just helping you make it back to shore safely.
Those free boat inspections will be at Springs Boat landing in Lancaster from 3:00pm to 5:00pm on Saturday and Sunday, 10am to noon at Ebenezer Boat landing on Lake Wylie.
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