Authorities patrol roadways and waterways for holiday weekend
Updated: Updated 05/26/2012 05:22 PM
By: Andy Mattison
RALEIGH -- If you plan to hit the open water this weekend, you'll have plenty of company.
At Falls Lake, authorities were in the water and the parking lot to make sure boats are registered and have the proper safety equipment.
"I had to spend a couple hours making sure I had all my safety equipment in the boat and didn't forget something, which is a common thing to do at the beginning of the summer, so that's why I was glad to let them take a look at the boat and make sure I had everything," said Wake Forest resident Rick Coates.
One safety precaution patrols are looking for is life jackets. If you're under 13 and on a boat, you're required to wear one.
"The main thing is just making sure that they have them. Before they leave the dock if we can catch them before they leave the dock, make sure they have them on board," said Durham County Sheriff's Deputy Eric Campen.
The sheriff's offices from Wake and Durham county along with other agencies are on patrol all weekend.
North Carolina ranks seventh in the nation in fatal boating accidents. Law enforcement officials want to improve that by making sure no one gets behind the wheel after having too much to drink.
"Anybody above a .08 would be considered operating while impaired. That's what we're looking for just like out on the road. Highway patrol will be doing checkpoints and we'll be doing them out on the lake," said North Carolina Wildlife Enforcement Officer Brent Ward.
Whether you wakeboard, kayak or jetski authorities want to make sure everyone has fun but safe holiday weekend.
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