HAYDEN LAKE, Idaho -- Kootenai County Sheriff’s deputies and boaters alike have been preparing for this summer’s busy boating season, which begins to ramp up after Memorial Day.
For Curtis Fritz, a good - and safe - day on Hayden Lake starts at the boat launch.
“If you're buying a new boat, have them show you how to unload and load the boat properly because that's the biggest damage that's going to happen [is] right there on the ramp,” said Fritz.
He should know. Fritz is an insurance agent who said he takes safety on the water very seriously. When Deputy Anthony Ghirarduzzi performed a routine inspection on his boat Monday, Fritz said he didn’t mind.
“No it's fine. It actually keeps everybody safe,” Fritz said.
“We're out here to educate the public on boating safety and make sure they have all their safety equipment on board,” said Deputy Ghirarduzzi.
Authorities said they want boaters to know there must be one life vest per person on board a boat. In addition, in a vessel 19 feet or smaller, passengers 14 or younger must being wearing a vest.
Deputy Ghirarduzzi said authorities did not bust anyone for operating a boat under the influence on Memorial Day, but added as boating season kicks into high gear, they stop close to a dozen OUI arrests every month.
The marine patrol planned to run five boats each day with two-man teams throughout most of the summer.