NORTHPORT, Ala. (WIAT) — The Alabama Marine Police from ALEA are asking boaters to play it smart and be safe for the upcoming 4th of July holiday weekend.
Trooper Freddie Ingram says ALEA will not tolerate anyone who breaks the law on the water.
“We understand it’s a holiday and people want to have fun, but we are also here to correct bad behavior, and here to correct any problems you might have so everyone can go home safe at the end of the holiday. We don’t want someone to die because they weren’t using a life jacket so we will be making sure everyone is obeying laws so they can go home safe,” said Ingram.
Ingram tells CBS 42 that he wrote 25 citations last month during the Memorial Day holiday weekend for boaters acting reckless on the water. The Alabama Marine Police took CBS 42 on a boat ride Friday morning on Lake Tuscaloosa where they discussed safety issues and their message about wanting boaters and swimmers to be safe. Ingram is hoping boaters will heed his advice.
“We’ve seen an uptick in careless reckless operations, and we had some people operating outside the rules of the road and we are going to be on the lookout for that. We are going to make sure boaters are on their side of the lake and make sure they are being courteous to other boaters,” said Ingram.
According to Alabama law, all boats must have one Coast Guard approved life jacket for each person on board. Passengers under 8-years-old are required to wear one at all times.