Following false alarms, Coast Guard asking boaters to label watercraft

Hampshire County

The Coast Guard is asking water enthusiasts to label their watercrafts or tie them down more securely.

So far this year, Coast Guard units have responded to more than 90 cases of unmanned, adrift, and unlabeled watercrafts resulting in thousands of dollars in tax-payer money wasted.

When the Coast Guard receives a distress call of a kayak floating without its owner, it’s standard procedure to start search efforts.  But in most cases, it’s a false alarm and wasted manpower.

“It kinda scared you a little bit because you didn’t know what it could be,” Dylan Hused of Sportsman’s Marina in Hadley told 22News. “But as the summers went on, it started being a normal occurrence.”

By adding your name and phone number to your watercraft, you can save Coast Guard units valuable time and money.

According to Petty Officer Andrew Barresi, search efforts can cost anywhere from $3,000 to upwards of $150,000.

Coast Guards are asking you to remove your watercraft from the water and secure it with a rope or line, to either a tree or pier. If it ends up in the water and in their possession, you will not face any criminal charges.

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