Learn How To Stay Safe On The Waterways

Learn How To Stay Safe On The Waterways

MERIDIAN TOWNSHIP - According to the U.S. Coast Guard there were 97 boating accidents in Michigan in 2014, so I'm met with Sergeant Dan Sump to get boating safety tips.

Anyone of the age of six or under must wear a life jacket. When wearing a life jacket be sure to zip all zippers and fasten any straps

"You want it to fit snug, most have draw straps on the side so that it stays tight," said Ingham county Sergeant Dan Sump.

To operate a boat in Michigan you must be at least 12 years of age if it's under power.

Sump said, "if a boat has a motor of a least 35 horse power there must be someone on board with them, also all boaters must have a boater safety certificate if they are born after 1996 when operating a boat or water craft."

All boats and water devices most stay 150ft. away from the shorelines when boating

"We have bowies out here, and they are also called no wakes, so when your inside of that area you have to slow down because if you hit waves it can cause damage to peoples docks," said Sump

Also if you have a sailboat and it doesn't have a motor then power boats have to give way to them because they have no way to steer quickly.

Floating devices such as water trampolines and inner tube are also allowed on the water.

Sump said, "if they stationary it in the water for a long period of time they have to go through the DNR to get a permit to do that. Otherwise they have to bring it close to shore with them when they're done at the end of the day."

Having liquor on boats is common, especially durning the summer holidays.

"Drinking on a boat is similar to driving on a vehicle. the captain is not allowed to drink and drive but passenger on the boat that are under the legal age limit of 21 can have alcohol," said Sump.

Lastly before getting on a boat be sure to check it's weight and capacity other wise the boat could begin to sink if it's over it's weight limit.

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