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DNR News

** Archived Article - please check for current information. **

May 25, 2012

May 25 marks beginning of 100 deadly days of summer

In an effort to keep state waterways and highways safe during the summer, the S.C. Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Law Enforcement Division and the S.C. Highway Patrol will again be partnering to raise awareness of the 100 deadly days of summer. DNR has produced two video public service announcements (Drink. Drive. Die?) about the dangers of alcohol and driving, whether that is on the state's highways or waterways. The campaign reminds boaters and drivers throughout the season to be safe and responsible.

In 1973 there were 64 fatalities as a result of recreational boating accidents and there were only 128,000 registered boats. There are approximately 450,000 recreational motorboats currently registered in South Carolina. In 2011 there were 19 boating fatalities with 98 accidents. Better boating laws and concentrated boating education classes statewide have teamed up in an effort to reduce the number of accidents and fatalities. Check other DNR Law Enforcement statistics.

The Memorial Day holiday weekend is considered the first blast of summer and one of the busiest weekends of the year on state waters. DNR boating safety and enforcement officers will once again perform a quick, but thorough, inspection for items such as required safety equipment and proper boat and motor registration. Those who are not in compliance with safety regulations or registration requirements will not be ticketed during the complimentary inspections. Boaters will be given an opportunity to correct the problem before they launch their boat. DNR officers will also be available to answer questions and give boaters tips on how to stay safe on the water.

"Boaters should pay special attention with keeping their safety equipment up to date. Boaters should inspect their lifejackets to ensure that they are in good serviceable condition and without tears or holes. The boat operator is responsible for having a proper fitting U.S. Coast Guard type II lifejacket for all passengers on board. It is especially important to check the size and fit of lifejacket for children. Our courtesy boat inspections are a proactive way to give boaters this opportunity before launching their vessels," said Col. Chisolm Frampton, deputy director of the DNR Law Enforcement Division.

DNR urges all boaters and water sports enthusiasts to be safety conscious, use lifesaving equipment, don't drink alcohol while operating a boat, obey the law and stay aware at all times of others in and around the water.

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