CONNECTICUT, USA — Memorial Day Weekend is drawing closer and with that, many people will begin their summer activities, including heading out onto the water.
As more people head out on the water it's important to keep in mind the basics of water safety, especially after this past weekend with two fatal water accidents.
"Memorial Day Weekend we should get good weather and we’re going to get a lot of boaters out on the water. The big thing is safety. When you’re in a kayak you’re low to the water and you’re not always visible to other boats," said Lauren Furey, the manager of Three Belles Outfitters in Niantic.
This time of year it’s mandated for the state of Connecticut to wear a life jacket.
"That’s the biggest thing that we see, water temperatures are still in the mid-50s but it’s a beautiful day outside and people don’t want to wear a life jacket. In the state of Connecticut from October 1 to May 31 you’re required to wear a life jacket out on a kayak or paddleboard," said Furey.
May is National Water Safety Month and the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) has provided tips and reminders for boaters to remain safe out on the water.
"Most visitors will find the current water temperatures much too cold to enter the water to cool off on what will be very hot days," said DEEP. "There is also a very real danger of hypothermia for swimmers, particularly children, who enter the water for any extended period of time."
"You need to find a life jacket that’s comfortable for you, you want something you can wear all the time. If it’s a good quality life jacket you’ll forget that you’re even wearing it," said Deryk Artioli, a sales representative for Three Belles Outfitters. "It's important to go out on the water with somebody else or tell somebody where you’re going so if for some reason you don’t show up when you’re supposed to, they know you’re supposed to be back and where they can get in touch with you."
Kayaks are the most prominent boats that are out on the water so it’s important to keep kayak safety tips in mind all weekend and in mind for the summer.
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