Stay safe on the water this holiday weekend

Heading into the Memorial Day weekend, the Jackson County Sheriff's Department is urging people heading out to rivers or lakes for fishing and boating to stay safe.

Sheriff's officials are reminding boaters to have enough life preservers for everyone on board the boat, and that children younger than 13 must keep them on at all times.

Those heading to the river should stay out of rapids that exceed their skill level. Rafters and kayakers should not boat alone, or near dams and outlets. They should also be on the lookout for stumps, snags and other hazards.

Make sure equipment is up-to-date and working, including maps, flares, a first-aid kit, an anchor and a working fire extinguisher for boats with enclosed compartments or a false floor.

Police are also warning boaters to not let alcohol impair their coordination, balance and judgment on the water.

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