ODNR says most boating accidents are preventable

ODNR says most boating accidents are preventable

CINCINNATI (FOX19) - There are plenty of waterways around the Tri-State to enjoy on a boat, but a day of fun can quickly turn dangerous.

“With most accidents, there’s a lot of human error involved, and most things can be prevented,” explains the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Officer Sgt. Cory Cover.

Sgt. Cover often patrols the Ohio River looking for violations while also helping any boaters in need.

This summer he has seen an increase of boaters due to the pandemic, Sgt. Cover said.

The increase in traffic on the water comes despite there being no concerts, festivals, or other popular events.

“Definitely not having those around has made the enforcement side easier,” explained Sgt. Cover, “And the public, they’re finding a way to recreate or just sit and swim off their boat that way.”

Sgt. Cover said he has noticed more canoes and kayaks especially.

“We ask people to act reasonably. Think if you were inside a kayak would you want someone to come flying past you,” Sgt. Cover said, “And the answer is probably no.”

Sgt. Cover says some of the most common problems happen because of where people sit on the boat.

He also says to check your boat trailer, life vests, and other equipment to make sure it is still in good shape.

Before you even go out on the water, make sure you check the latest weather forecast because the weather can change quickly during the summer.

We always recommend that you have the FOX19 Now First Alert Weather App with you.

Once you have the free app downloaded, go into those settings, and turn on those notifications.

Those notifications will come in handy because you will be alerted if there is lightning or heavy rain in your vicinity.

And if you find yourself caught in a thunderstorm, it is best to return to the dock or get to land as quickly and safely as possible.

If you do need help while out on the water, you can call 911 or #ODNR in an emergency.

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