Boating safety on Logan Martin Lake - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

Boating safety on Logan Martin Lake during Memorial Day weekend

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Marine Police will be checking boats to make sure operators have a life jacket for every passenger aboard. (abc3340.com) Marine Police will be checking boats to make sure operators have a life jacket for every passenger aboard. (abc3340.com)

There's heavy enforcement on Logan Martin Lake this holiday weekend. The Marine Patrol Division says three people drowned on the lake in 2012. This year, it wants everyone to be alert, be safe and know the rules.

It's the first Summer outing on the boat for many on Logan Martin Lake.

Brett Gatewood says, "Make sure you respect other people on the water and not get too crazy cause anything can happen."

Sergeant Kim Moeller is ready for anything, like helping a stranded boater. She's been monitoring the lake nearly 20 years and can easily spot a violation. "You have to be mindful of the wake your boat puts off, also excessive speed in a congestive area."

Sergeant Kim Moeller with the Marine Police Division patrols the waters on Logan Martin Lake Saturday. (abc3340.com)

She stopped one boat carrying several people to check for life jackets. This time, everyone had one. Moeller says, "I'm still finding.. because people have family coming and extra people on board.. they're not counting life vests."

She says three drowned on this lake last year, including an 8-year-old child. Children under 8 must wear a vest at all times.

Moeller is also strict when it comes to boaters violating the right-a-way and she's looking out for people being reckless, such as someone on a personal water craft jumping the wake behind a boat. She says a reckless operation violation could cost more than 200 dollars.

Marine Police will be cracking down on people being reckless on personal watercrafts during the holiday weekend. (abc3340.com)

She's also mindful of BUI. "You can have alcohol on board but if ever a situation occurred where designated driver should apply it is on these weekends."

Boaters have extra things to think about this weekend.. like missing hazard markers.

Last weekend there was some flooding in this area. Boaters are encouraged to watch out for floating debris. Regina Rogers says "limbs, and trash on the lake, you have to watch that."

As far as changes on the water this year. Moeller says, "If you've got a stand-up paddle board, prior to this year we did not require a life vest."

It's another requirement Moeller hopes will keep people safe while having fun this Summer.

Moeller also says boaters should reconsider navigating after sunset because of unknown hazards that might still be in the water because of the recent flooding.

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