Boating safety encouraged during holiday - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Boating safety encouraged during holiday

MORGAN COUNTY, AL (WAFF) -

The Fourth of July holiday means there are a lot of boaters on local waterways. Morgan County Rescue Squad Chief Danny Kelso said boating can be a lot of fun, but it can be dangerous too.

Kelso said the biggest lifesavers on the water are life jackets. They are required for kids eight and under, but he strongly suggests everyone should wear them.

Kelso added that it's also important to have a kill switch connected to the boat's operator that will stop the engine if something happens to the driver.

"An accident happens on the water and people get ejected from the vessel, the vessel is still in motion. It doesn't stop. And the only way to stop that vessel when the driver is not in control is a kill switch," he said.

Kelso said a simple prelaunch check of your boat can prevent getting stuck in the water.

"We have people that are in stranded vessels from the easiest thing like note even checking to see if they have plenty of oil for their two-cycle engine. Checking their gas," he said.

He said it's important to know the area, and to always have a designated driver. Several law enforcement agencies are patrolling waterways through July 4th.

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