Life-vest use urged as Memorial Day approaches - FOX Carolina 21

Life-vest use urged as Memorial Day approaches

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A life jacket lays on the shores of Lake Hartwell in Anderson County. (File/FOX Carolina) A life jacket lays on the shores of Lake Hartwell in Anderson County. (File/FOX Carolina)
LAKE GREENWOOD, SC (FOX Carolina) -

The unofficial start to summer happens this weekend, as hundreds of boaters are expected on area lakes during Memorial Day weekend.

However, the Department of Natural Resources wants to remind everyone of basic safety tips before the fun begins.

Officials said that life jackets are not required by law in South Carolina, but they strongly encourage everyone riding in a boat wear one. They said that before leaving the dock, people should also check the fit of the life jacket, especially on children.

DNR spokesman Brian Welch said officers will also be checking boating equipment during the holiday weekend. He said they will also be patrolling for impaired boaters.

"If you're going to drink, you need to make sure you have a designated driver," Welch said. "It's the same on the road as it is on the water - .08 is the limit."

Welch said larger boats are required to have a throwable life preserver and a fire extinguisher on board.

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