Jet Ski safety more important than ever before

Posted at 11:07 PM, Aug 28, 2018
and last updated 2018-08-28 23:07:14-04

The Niagara River near Niawanda Park in the City of Tonawanda is filled with boaters during the summer. 

"It's probably one of the busiest spots along the Niagara River," Lt. Scott Sheehan said, "It's much busier than it has been in the past."

That popularity forces Lt. Sheehan and the Underwater Recovery Team to be on standby, because more boaters brings more chances for something to go wrong.

"We're seeing a lot more problems than we ever had."

It's problems that can often come from personal watercraft (PWC) like Jet Ski's. 

"They're more difficult to be seen because they are smaller and they're faster than most of the boats out there."

According to the U.S. Coast Guard the average incident rate for this year is higher than the 5 year average. Meaning accidents are up. 

"You need to keep your head on a swivel. You need to be looking around you all of the time."

Lt. Sheehan suggests that any boater really takes their time and is alert at all times. Because the water can be unforgiving. 

"You need to know what you're doing when you're out there or you will put yours or other people's lives at risk."

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