Reminder for the week: Boaters urged to check gear before putting vessels in the water
DOVER (March 23, 2018) – To achieve public compliance with laws and regulations through education and enforcement actions that help conserve Delaware’s fish and wildlife resources and ensure safe boating and public safety, DNREC Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police officers between March 12-18 made 1,504 contacts with hunters, anglers, boaters and the general public, issuing 10 citations. Officers responded to 24 complaints regarding possible violations of laws and regulations or requests to assist the public. An increased Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police presence continued at the C&D Canal Conservation Area and Michael N. Castle Trail.
Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police in the Community
- On March 15, Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police officers presented information on Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police careers during a career fair at Sussex Tech High School.
Citations issued by category, with the number of charges in parentheses, included:
Wildlife Conservation: License forgery or misrepresentation (1).
Fisheries Conservation: Unlicensed fishing (1).
Other: Disposal or discharge of solid waste (1), operating a motor vehicle off an established roadway on a state wildlife area (2)*, and operating an unlicensed or unregistered motor vehicle in a state wildlife area (5)*.
*Includes citation(s) issued at the C&D Canal Conservation Area.
DNREC’s Division of Fish & Wildlife recognizes and thanks the majority of anglers, hunters and boaters who comply with and support Delaware’s fishing, hunting and boating laws and regulations. Citizens are encouraged to report fish, wildlife and boating violations to the Delaware Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police by calling 302-739-4580. Wildlife violations may also be reported anonymously to Operation Game Theft by calling 800-292-3030 or online at http://de.gov/ogt.
Are you AWARE?
Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police remind boaters that in addition to taking a boater safety course, making sure your vessel is water-ready increases your safety levels. Before putting your vessel in the water, you should perform a pre-departure check by ensuring that you have:
- All current required licenses and registrations, including fishing license(s), boat registration, boating safety certificate and, for vessels registered out-of-state launching at a Division of Fish & Wildlife tidal boat ramp, a boat ramp certificate;
- Enough lifejackets for everyone on board, including children age 12 or younger who are required by Delaware law to wear them; for vessels 16 feet or more in length, a throwable life preserver is also required;
- Checked the local weather forecast; Left a float plan with a responsible friend, family member or local marina, including a description of your boat, when you plan to head out, who is going with you, where you plan to go, and when you plan to return;
- Checked for working navigation lights, steering and throttle controls;
- Checked oil, fuel and fluid levels;
- Checked for fuel leaks, including hose clamps and connections;
- Drained all water from the engine compartment or bilge, and replaced and secured the bilge plug;
- A fully-charged engine battery and fire extinguishers;
- Emergency flares and a fully charged cell phone or marine radio; and
- Plenty of water to stay hydrated and sunscreen to protect against sunburn, which can be severe on the water.
For more information, including Delaware’s boating safety course schedule, access to the online Delaware Boating Handbook and other boating information, please visit Delaware Boating Safety, or contact Sgt. Brooke Africa, Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police boating safety coordinator, at 302-739-9086 or firstname.lastname@example.org.