DUI only on a highway? Police patrol West Virginia waterways too

We’re a couple of weeks into May and finally the temperatures are starting to heat up, and as spring turns to summer there is no doubt that people will want to beat the heat by hitting the water. With summer just around the corner, the Division of Natural Resources has made safety on the waterways a priority.

May has been designated the National Water Safety Month, and DNR officers in West Virginia are preparing to patrol the waters throughout the summer. Part of this preparation includes ensuring that they have the tools and the training to help in any emergency situation.

As a part of Water Safety Month, DNR officers took extra classes focused on conducting water rescues while they are also submerged in the water. “Our guys are faced with many different situations on the water, and the possibility of having to rescue somebody is very possible in what we do,” said Sgt. Dwayne Duffield who participated in an event on Friday, May 16.

DNR officers also want those operating the boats to practice safety and be prepared for an unexpected accident. A very specific piece of advice included limiting the amount of alcohol that is consumed, especially by those who plan to operate the craft.

Practicing safe boating is always a good thing, and something that a lot of our readers can get behind. But let’s not pretend that the summer safety efforts won’t include patrolling the waters in West Virginia for situations involving boating law violations and not just incidents that require emergency aid. A drunk driving charge resulting from the operation of a boat is just as serious as if it had involved a car.

Source: WVNSTV, “May Marks the Start of National Water Safety Month,” Jessica Schueler, May 16, 2014

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