TPWD representatives urge caution when boating Labor Day weekend

TPWD representatives urge caution when boating Labor Day weekend

TYLER (KYTX) - As american workers take a break for Labor Day, many opt to spend their time relaxing on the water. Texas Parks and Wildlife representatives say -- Labor Day weekend is one of the busiest boating weekends of the year. 

And while they encourage everyone to have fun out there -- they say safety should come first. CBS 19's Katiera Winfrey explains how to stay safe on the water this holiday weekend. Before you get on a boat for labor day celebrations, it's important to know the rules of the water.

"That is the number one priority and you shouldn't have anyone on the boat that doesn't already know the safety rules and you should have life jackets for every single person," said boater Kathryn Covent. She and her uncle Terry Thrower enjoy spending holiday weekends on Lake Tyler. Although it's fun to get together... Being responsible is even more important.

"Be safe that's the main thing we all want to go home to our families and have to go back to work on Tuesday," said Thrower.

To drive home the importance of safety, TPWD released a new video called "Beautiful But Gone." In it, family members shares stories of loved ones dying in boating accidents.

"Always use a kill switch, have your children wear a life jacket when they're in the water... don't assume your kid is wearing a life vest, make sure they're wearing a life vest," said voices used in the TPWD video.

Wearing a life jacket should be a top priority. Coast guards say 90 percent of people who drown in boating-related accidents would be still alive today if they had been wearing one. In addition to taking safety measures for yourself, it's the law...

"You may see one of our game wardens stop by and do a safety check to see if you have all the required safety equipment, fire extinguisher a life jacket the correct properly fitting, you have a sound producing device," said a TPWD representative in the video.

A few more tips: Wildlife representatives say -- you should always use a kill switch when boating. It stops the engine if you fall overboard -- so you won't be stranded or run over. Although it seems obvious, but learn how to swim in case you fall off the boat. And as always -- supervise your kids when you're on the water.


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