Lake patrol urging safety on the water this Labor Day weekend

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LAKE MURRAY -- Labor Day weekend brings thousands of travelers to area lakes for swimming, boating and fishing, but while you are on the water having fun authorities say it is important to think safety first.

"Obviously we make sure all the children have a life vest on. We kinda do what you do on the road you have to do defensive boat driving. Just like you do on cars. If we are going to pull kids on tubes we go into a cove that is not as crowded and you just have to pay attention," Lake-goer Jennifer Dancer said.

Lake Patrol is out in full force working to keep lake-goers safe. OHP Trooper Michael Groeber says they are out enforcing boating laws.

"What we are looking for to start out with is of course alcohol we are keeping a real close eye on that. This is a holiday weekend and they tend to want to twist off so we monitor that," Groeber said.

Groeber says he also looks for boats following too close, acting carelessly and people out of their seats while the boat is operating.

"Keep their self seated while the vessel is in operation above an idle, be conscience about where you are and what you are doing at all times. Basically you have to keep a proper look out " Groeber said.

Groeber adds that boaters are required by state law to have the proper equipment on board.

"Twelve and under are required to have a life jacket on at all times the vessel is in operation. The vessel has to be properly equipped with life jackets, fire extinguisher and if it is over 16 feet it also requires a throw cushion," Groeber said.

He says it is also important to stay hydrated and protect your skin while you are out in the sun.

"We want everyone to have a safe holiday, but we want them to be very, very careful," Groeber said.