Boaters reminded to be safe, follow rules when hitting area lakes

Area lakes will be busy starting this Memorial Day weekend.

Texas Parks and Wildlife Department officials are reminding people to stay safe and follow the rules.

“What we’re seeing is just equipment violations, not having that necessary safety equipment or becoming intoxicated,” said Tyler Zaruba a Texas Game Warden.

There are five things officers are looking for: life preserving devices for all passengers onboard, a sound producing device like a horn, a fire extinguisher, current registration and a type 4 throwable or a ring buoy.

If you’re missing something on the list, you will receive a citation. Zaruba also suggests having a designated sober driver.

“It’s not illegal to consume alcohol while operating a boat in Texas, but it’s illegal to be intoxicated while operating a boat in Texas,” said Zaruba.

He says rules on the water are just as important as the rules on the road.

“You just have to be aware of your surroundings and not only know that your actions are affecting you, but somebody else’s actions are affecting you,” said Zaruba.

If you were born after September 1, 1993 you are required to take a boater education course in order to operate a boat.