Missouri’s waterways are expected to be increasingly populated with boaters with the approach of Memorial Day.  Missouri State Highway Patrol is ramping up efforts to increase boater safety.

KMZU spoke with Captain John Hotz with Missouri Highway Patrol.

Captain Hotz stresses that life jackets are required for boaters under seven years of age.  All operators of a vessel born after January 1, 1984 are required to possess an approved boating safety identification card and photo ID.

Winter weather, time, and other elements may affect the readiness of personal watercraft.  Inspection of personal watercraft is recommended.  Troopers will be participating in National Safe Boating Week.  To assist toward that end, marine operations troopers participating in National Safe Boating Week (May 20-26), will be at the following boat equipment inspection stations within KMZU’s listening area, Saturday, May 20:

Troop A – from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.

  • Blue Springs Lake Marina, 1700 NE Bowlin Road, Lee’s Summit
  • Longview Lake Marina, 9898 Longview Road, Kansas City
  • Camp Branch Marina on Smithville Lake, 17201 Paradesian Street, Smithville
  • Shawnee Bend boat ramp on Truman Lake, Golf Road, Warsaw

Troop B – from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m.

  • Ray Behrens boat ramp on Mark Twain Lake, 20642 Highway J, Monroe City
  • Hannibal Riverfront in Hannibal

Troop F – from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m.

  • Public Beach #2, at Lake of the Ozarks State Park
  • Conservation Access below Bagnell Dam, on Lake of the Ozarks
  • Pirates Point Marina on Lake of the Ozarks

Troop H – beginning 10 a.m.

  • Big Lake boat ramp in Holt County
  • French Bottom’s boat ramp near Frontier Casino in St. Joseph

Be sure to designate a sober captain if alcohol consumption is a part of boating plans.