Ohio park officials remind boaters of boating safety

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources wants everyone to keep safety in mind when hitting the water, with the opening of the new Alum Creek Marina.

LEWIS CENTER, Ohio — The latest two water-related deaths at Alum Creek really drive home the importance of water safety, just in time for Alum “Creekend.”

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources wants everyone to keep safety in mind when hitting the water, with the opening of the new Alum Creek Marina.

“Security is the most sacred thing we do – when you see officers and our staff there,” said ODNR’s Mary Mertz.

Ahead of the marina‘s grand opening, the ODNR and visitors took a moment of silence to acknowledge the loss of the jet skier who died Friday night at Alum Creek.

10TV asked Mertz for his top tips for water safety.

“I love the water, I grew up on the water, but you have to respect the water, and the most important thing you can do is wear your life jacket,” Mertz said.

She suggested always going with a companion, especially kayakers, and paying attention to weather conditions.

“The conditions in a lake are very different from those in a swimming pool. You don’t have a lot of wind hitting you in your backyard, there aren’t a lot of current situations, and there aren’t a lot of boats around, and here he is,” said ODNR Lt. Dawn Powell.

Powell advised everyone to swim only in designated areas and to be mindful of your body, especially after a long day on the water.

“You know your talent. Did we take swimming lessons, did we?” Powell explained, “Just know that when you’re tired, you’re going to react very differently. You won’t have as much energy to do what you need to do.”

She said proper hydration is key. For kids, Powell suggests making sure the lifejacket is the right size and doing a “test lift.”

“The first thing we want to do is talk to a child and let them know that any button, any zipper, is important, and do that with us so they learn,” Powell said.

“Always be aware of your surroundings, when turning, look behind you. That’s the number one reason people have accidents because they’re turning in front of each other,” said Jeff Eversman of Buds-Marina Boats. . Eversman reminds boaters that everyone should have a spotter, keep up to date with safety classes and carry a distress flag, as well as a buoyant cushion in case a passenger falls overboard.

Alum “Creekend” events run all weekend.

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