DNR’s boater safety checklist

Boater Safety ahead of the Memorial Day Weekend
Published: May. 27, 2022 at 6:31 PM EDT
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GREENVILLE, S.C. (FOX Carolina) - Clear skies are expected for the Memorial holiday weekend and hundreds of boaters will be heading out to Lake Hartwell.

Officers with the Department of Natural Resources remind boaters to go through a safety checklist before heading out on the water.

“File a float plan or let someone know where you’re going and when you’re going to be back. if you have friends or family coming into town you want to do a headcount before you leave the dock to make sure you have enough life jackets before also being familiar with the rules and navigation on the lake” Said Shawn Hanna, Lance Corporal with DNR.

He tells FOX Carolina, that various law enforcement agencies will be on patrol, and you can be stopped for safety checks.

“We’re looking for obvious violations”, said Hanna. “When you’re out here on the lake there are no lines on the road or street signs or stoplights or anything like that. So we’re looking for people that just aren’t paying attention.”

Hanna reiterates the importance of staying safe not only in boating, but swimming, and other water activities.

“It’s not the most fun thing in the world to go swimming without a life jacket but you can’t see the bottom of Lake Hartwell and it’s a dangerous lake. and as we’ve said before over 200 people have died on this lake and rarely is a life jacket what caused the problem but what saved them.”

If you choose to drink on your boat, a designated driver is required.

Starting tomorrow SC DNR will hold courtesy boat safety inspections at different docks across the state. Hanna said you can run through the boater requirements for equipment and safety before heading out without penalty of a ticket.