June 13, 2014 7:56 pm
Updated: June 13, 2014 10:12 pm

WATCH: Alcohol and life jackets key issues for boat safety

KELOWNA — As boating season in the Okanagan kicks off, water safety experts from the Lifesaving Society are encouraging boaters to consider their own safety and the safety of others while on the water.

Each year, local lakes are the scene of serious and often preventable accidents.

Experts say it’s surprising how many people are unaware of basic water safety guidelines as well as the safety equipment requirements for different size boats.
According to safety educators, there are two key issues that lead to accidents year after year.

“Right now our biggest issue is a lot of people are going boating and swimming alone and people aren’t wearing their life jackets or Personal Floating Devices. And another big thing is alcohol on the water”, says Kim Willox.

Safety Educators also say that a lot of people don’t have the minimum required safety equipment to operate their boat.

“Many people don’t know that they must have life jackets, ropes, flashlights, and flares, for a small recreational craft”, says Kim McKinnon.

RCMP and the Coast Guard will be out on the water this summer, checking for proper safety equipment.

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