Weathering the Water

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They are the ones called for water rescues. Whether it be a jet-skier who lost the jet ski or a capsized boat, even collisions on the water, but this week they want to meet boaters in
different circumstances.

Randy Ventress, a Flotilla Staff Officer with the Coast Guard, explains the safety checks.

"We're not a law enforcement agency, but we do want everybody to be safe and by having these safety items on the boat and by knowing the rules of the road, we want to make our bays and waterways very safe."

The Coast Guard stresses the importance of a life vest, and with the operator inattention being the number one cause of boating fatalities, paying attention before you get on the water becomes more important.

"The reality: can they swim a half a mile, can they swim a mile."

Coastie, a robotic boat that scoots along and talks to children, says the little ones always need a life jacket.

"Even though children can swim and they can sometimes swim a long way, you never know where your boats going to be and you might be a long, long way from shore."

Even if you're the good boater, it's hard to account for the hundreds of other vessels in the water. Still, Coastie tells adults you are responsible for people's lives.

"They should always take a safe boating class and the classes are taught by my friends in the Coast Guard auxiliary. They can take a class anytime they call. We teach them all during the summer and the winter."

Classes expected to save and raise awareness to keep summer fun. For a complete list of the safety check requirements go online to: