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Don't drink and boat, ALEA warns ahead of 4th of July weekend

ALEA reminds the public about boating safety tips ahead of the 4th of July weekend.

GUNTERSVILLE, Alabama — Fourth of July is a time for people to get back on the lake, but ALEA wants to remind Alabamians about the importance of boater safety

This past Memorial day, ALEA Corporal Marine Patrol Trooper Robert Ping said his team noticed more traffic on the water than normal. He said ALEA expects there will be more people on the water this weekend too and reminds boaters that the more people on the water, the more dangerous it is.

On the Fourth, the marine patrol division, as well as Alabama special agents, will be on the water to prevent accidents before they happen.

"We're going to put an emphasis on trying to stop the alcohol being used on the lake or reduce it and try to maintain a low incident in regards to accidents," said Ping.

Ping wanted to emphasize that boaters can experience water fatigue and when adding alcohol, accidents are more prone to happen.

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Ping said to remember the following tips when going on the water.

  • Make sure the driver of the boat is sober
  • Be observant, look for swimmers, especially children
  • All children under the age of 8 must wear a life jacket
  • Have throwable cushion if passenger goes overboard

"A lot of that can saves lives even that throwable cushion people wonder why they have to have that if people go overboard that's the first and fastest thing you can do is throw them that cushion so they have something to grab onto," said Ping.

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