Park Rangers keep people safe this 4th of July

By  | 

LAKE TEXOMA-- We are out here at East Burns Run on Lake Texoma celebrating the 4th of July, Park Ranger style. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers invited KXII out, on their Park Ranger boat, to make sure everyone was having a fun and safe holiday."

If you see lights on the lake, don't be nervous. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers wants to make sure everyone is being safe.

"When you get a July 4th Holiday like we have today, that's just a time we have a high density of people out and we just want to have a presence out here and help people understand what they need to have on their boats when their out on the water," said, Paul Balkenbush, with the corps.

Park Rangers, like Balkenbush, check boats for the correct number of life jackets, a throwable device, a device that makes noise, and a fire extinguisher.

Caleb Sutherland's family was the first boat we checked out.

"Yeah, it's weird, you just want to make sure you have everything on the boat and make sure everyone is wearing a life jacket," Sutherland said.

If boaters are wearing life jackets, the Park Rangers reward people with freebies.

Park rangers say for every 4 warning citations given, at least one of those boats gets a ticket, but they say that's not what they are out here to do.

"You know, it's not our intention when we come out here to write tickets, our intention is to help people understand what they need to have on their vessel to be safe and have a good time," Balekenbuch explained.

The corps checks every watercraft on the lake, even jet skis. They will be out the rest of the 4th of July Holiday week and weekend. Day and night.

For the hour we were out on the lake with the corps, we didn't give out a citation or a ticket, but it doesn't mean you shouldn't double check your boat before you unload.