MIAMI BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) – The upcoming Fourth of July weekend means several people will be celebrating on and by the water, which could bring potential danger.
It’s already shaping up to be a beautiful time to be on the water, but as the holiday gets closer, officials have some safety and warnings.
A fleet is in full force and is ready to respond.
Boats from the Coast Guard, Miami-Dade Police, Miami Fire Rescue and Florida Fish and Wildlife, are all banding together on Thursday before what will surely be a busy holiday weekend on the water.
If you plan on taking your boat out, there are some things you should know.
First, the Coast Guard will create a regulated area where boaters must follow certain rules.
“All vessels within the regulated area are required to transit no more than 15 knots that limits the amount of traffic, and will make everybody a little bit more safe,” said commanding officer of the USCG Station Miami Beach Eddie Oropeza.
Officials want people to have fun this Fourth of July weekend, but also want everybody to be safe.
They urge people to get their life vests and communication gear ready.
“Make sure you safety equipment is onboard, make sure you understand and how to use those safety equipment, understand the radio frequencies unless something goes bad and you know who to call,” said Oropeza.
And FWC has a warning about drinking and boating.
“If you are on the water in the state of Florida, and you are operating under the influence of alcohol or drugs, you’re not going to get cited, you’re not going to be warned, you will be arrested,” said Major Alberto Maza.
Last July, Miami-Dade County had 79 boating accidents. Two of them were fatal, there were 53 injuries and over $1 million in damages.
“Our goal this weekend is to prevent that,” said Maza.
“You see boating accidents, you see a lot of dehydration from alcohol, so we ask people to stay hydrated, have a designated captain,” said MFR LT. Pete Sanchez.
City of Maimi Fire Rescue is stepping up their resources.
Their vessels are basically a fire engine on a boat, and will be ready to respond and save lives in any situation.
“All agencies are out in the water constantly making sure that everybody is being safe, that there are no emergencies, and if there are, we can handle them and get to them as quickly as possible,” said Sanchez.
Officials are also going to be at night watching as people return to set off fireworks.
They are asking that people that do return at night to make sure that their navigation lights are working and to go slow.
Copyright 2022 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.