Wolf administration stresses boat safety this holiday weekend

Fourth of July

(WHTM) — The Wolf administration is urging Pennsylvanians to be safe on the water during the Fourth of July weekend.

State law requires a life jacket on board for every person on the boat. Children 12 and under must wear a life jacket on a boat that’s less than 20 feet in length and in canoes and kayaks.

Last year, 11 people died in Pennsylvania in boating accidents. Five have already died this year.

Another big focus? Reminding people not to operate boats under the the influence.

“From July 2nd through the 4th, Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission will participate in Operation Dry Water,” Mark Sweppenheiser, Waterways Conservation officer, said. “This nationally coordinated event aims to prevent boating accidents and fatalities through education and enhanced boating under the influence or BUI enforcement.”

Officers say it’s important to check weather conditions before going on the water. Also, make sure to have a sober designated driver if those on the boat are planning to drink.

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