Boat patrols help keep Suncoast boaters safe over the Labor Day weekend

Boat patrols help keep Suncoast boaters safe over the Labor Day weekend
Marine patrol officers keep Suncoast boaters safe over the holiday weekend. (Source: WWSB)

SARASOTA, Fla. (WWSB) - Suncoast boaters were hoping to not hear sirens from police boats this Labor Day weekend. Marine patrol officers from the Longboat Key Police Department and many other agencies were out on the water keeping people safe over the long holiday weekend.

“We have two boats out on the water as well as the county boats, Manatee County, FWC, as well as the Coast Guard” said Josh Connors, a marine patrol officer with the Longboat Key Police Department. “We’re all overlapping and we’re backing each other up, shows a lot of enforcement in the area”

Marine patrol officers say Sunday was very busy for them, Labor Day wasn’t as busy. They’ve been handing out some citations for speeding and safety violations.

“It’s been going very well, we’ve had a lot of boat traffic, a lot of families coming out here enjoying the time for the most part” said Lt. Chris Skinner, a marine patrol officer with the Longboat Key Police Department. “Everyone is obeying the rules, being very prudent and careful as boaters, having a good time, there’s the occasional speeder who doesn’t know the rules. We make a stop, sometimes we issue a citation, sometimes a warning or just some education”

They were also keeping a close eye on people drinking and boating. This year, they say that wasn’t too big of an issue.

“Most important, the operator should not be using alcohol,” said Skinner. “We need them to be sober and being careful and responsible for their party. We want everyone to get out here and have a good time and get home safe.”

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