Coast Guard highlights recreational boating safety on the Connecticut River

BOSTON — The Coast Guard is partnering with the Connecticut River Task Force on recreational boating safety boardings this summer along the Massachusetts portion of the Connecticut River, one of the state’s busiest waterways.

Coast Guard Sector Boston law enforcement crews are assisting state and local law enforcement agencies from Massachusetts with the safety initiative.

The Connecticut River boasts a large recreational presence of motor vessels, paddlecraft, water sports, campers and anglers alike. Safety should be a priority for everyone operating on the water as speed restrictions and private aids to navigation are there to protect those who share the river.

Boaters are strongly encouraged to properly educate themselves before they go out on the water to ensure compliance with federal and state requirements regarding safety equipment. In addition to avoiding fines and penalties, this equipment could save lives. Preparation, maintenance, and use of safety equipment like lifejackets, whistles, and working navigational lights can increase chances of survival in the event of a boating accident.

The Coast Guard also reminds those who are out on the water to boat responsibly. In 2017, alcohol was responsible for 19% of all boating fatalities. Anyone found to be operating a vessel with a blood alcohol content of .08 or higher may be prosecuted. Additionally, the Coast Guard strongly urges boaters to not operate under the influence of marijuana or other drugs.

The Connecticut River, an American Heritage River that spans over 407 miles, is a navigable waterway that extends through three state boundaries, and is federally regulated by the U.S. Coast Guard.

For information on federal safety requirements before your next trip to the river, visit the U.S. Coast Guard website at: www.uscgboating.org.

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