Memorial Day marks start of boating season - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Memorial Day marks start of boating season

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PLATTSBURGH, N.Y. - Jean-Luc Methe came down from Quebec to launch his boat in Treadwell Marina in Plattsburgh. "Lake Champlain is the best place for family boating," Methe said.

The boating veteran has set sail on his boat, "The Catamini," for the last 23 years. He plans on taking advantage of the nice weather on its way. "Every weekend until October," he said.

As he gets ready to launch his boat in the water, he wants to make sure he spends his summer safe. He will be taking advantage of the Coast Guard’s free boat inspections. "It's all for free. We do this as a complimentary service for the public. One of our jobs as the auxiliary is to handle things like boat inspections and public education," said Don Craig from the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary in Plattsburgh.

Craig says of the many precautions to take when out on the water, there's really only one important thing to do. "Wearing a life jacket -- It's probably the one thing that will save lives more than anything else," he said.

Methe will be taking his life jacket with him on "The Catamini," among other things. "VHF radio to call the coast guard and a lifesaver to throw at someone in the water," he said. With proper gear and a boat inspection on the way, he is ready for a fun and safe boating season.

Last September Governor Andrew Cuomo signed legislation for boaters to have a mandatory boating certificate. The law will go into effect in the coming years. This year requires those 18 years and younger to take an eight hour boat safety course.
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