On July 7 – 8, 2017 Ontario Provincial Police Highway Safety Division (Marine Unit) teamed up with the Ministry Of Natural Resources and Forestry enforcement officers to patrol lakes in Aweres Township and surrounding area.
A total of 13 Provincial Offence Notices were handed out under the Liquor Licence Act of Ontario for having liquor in an open container in other than a licensed premise, residence or private place and for operating or having the care or control of a boat that is underway while there is contained in the boat any liquor, except under the authority of a licence or permit.
Drinking while boating is just as dangerous as drinking and driving and the very same laws apply. If you are caught operating a motorized or non-motorized vessel while impaired, you will also lose your ability to operate your motor vehicle. Drinking alcohol on boats is only allowed when the boat has sleeping, cooking and washroom facilities and is anchored or docked.
A total of three Provincial Offence Notices were issued under the Small Vessel Regulations of the Canada Shipping Act for missing safety equipment on a vessel and no lifejackets on board.
If you don’t wear it, it won’t work. OPP data continues to show that eight out of ten victims who die in fatal boating incidents are not wearing a Personal Floatation Device (PFD). Many boaters who drown believe they are good swimmers, so they think having a PFD on board and within easy reach is good enough. But, most drownings happen unexpectedly when small boats capsize or someone falls overboard and can’t grab that PFD.
Make sure you understand the operating instructions of your PFD and when choosing a lifejacket choose one that is suitable for the activity. Check the label to make sure that it is Canadian approved and finally, make sure it fits snugly. The Canadian Red Cross and Transport Canada have excellent information about PFDs and lifejackets on their websites.