Boating Safety Emphasized for Holiday Weekend
BIG LAKE - The volunteer members of the Coast Guard Auxiliary are at Big Lake this time every year.
"I feel we do a lot of good, keeping people safe towing them in," said Rusty Scholle, who’s had 13 years with the Auxiliary.
As part of their service, boaters can get a free inspection.
"We check for flame arresters, we check fuel lines to make sure there's no cracks in the fuel lines; we check for flares; we check they have a radio,” said Marie Scholle, Commodore with the Coast Guard Auxiliary.
The Auxiliary won't fine you for not having the right gear, but they will tell you what you need to keep safe.
Good advice is also passed on: Let a friend or neighbor know when you are heading out on the water.
The most important piece of advice, says the Auxiliary, is to wear a life jacket.
When the body hits the almost freezing water, gasping for air can be a natural reaction.
“With a life jacket, even if they go under water, the life jacket will pull the body back up and allow you to cough all that back up,” said Marie Scholle.
"If you have kids playing on the docks, where the swimming area is, they need to be wearing a life jacket because you can walk out to the area and it can be nice and flat and then they fall into a hole, they panic and they drown.”