GRDA Offers Safe Boating Tips for Memorial Day Weekend

May 22, 2024

Wear It! The Grand River Dam Authority Police Department is reminding all those celebrating the Memorial Day weekend on the water to wear their life jackets. They only work if you wear them.

The countdown to Memorial Day Weekend is underway. Not only does the upcoming holiday weekend mark the traditional beginning of the summer boating season on Grand and Hudson, but it will also be one of the busiest weekends on the lakes.

As thousands of boaters and lake enthusiasts return to the waters, the Grand River Dam Authority Police Department is taking the opportunity to remind them to “Boat Safe, Boat Smart and Boat Sober” all summer long.

“We know thousands of people are planning to visit our waters over the long holiday weekend and we encourage them to do so,” said GRDA’s Justin Alberty. “We just want them to make safety a priority, to help ensure an enjoyable outing.”

Of course, safe boating begins with proper life jacket usage, and that is a message the GRDA Police promotes year-round. GRDA is proud to join with the National Safe Boating Council to recognize May 18 – 24 as National Safe Boating Week and takes this opportunity to pass these important life jacket tips:

Meanwhile, smart boating happens when boaters are acquainted with the vessel they will be operating and the area they will be visiting on the water. With that in mind, GRDA also offers the following smart boating tips:

Finally, GRDA Police continue to stress the importance of boating sober. According to statistics from the United States Coast Guard (USCG), alcohol use is a contributing factor in a third of all recreational boating fatalities. Alcohol use can affect a boat operator’s judgment, vision, balance, and coordination. These impairments then increase the likelihood of accidents for both passengers and operators. USCG data shows that in boating deaths involving alcohol use, over half the victims capsized their boats and/or fell overboard.

If you have an emergency and need immediate assistance while on the water, the GRDA Police encourages you to dial 911. The department’s non-emergency number is (918) 256 0911.