Coast Guard offers water safety tips ahead of holiday weekend - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Coast Guard offers water safety tips ahead of holiday weekend

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The US Coast guard is reminding residents of water safety ahead of Memorial Day weekend (WFSB) The US Coast guard is reminding residents of water safety ahead of Memorial Day weekend (WFSB)
NEW HAVEN, CT (WFSB) -

It’s the unofficial start to summer, and it sure is going to feel like it the next couple days.

Before you get out on your boat, or kayaking, or any other water activities, the US Coast Guard want to give you a couple reminders to make sure you’re safe this holiday weekend.

“My passion is being out at sea,” said Luis Mendes of New Haven.

Every day, Mendes comes out to Long Island Sound and if he can, gets on his kayak.

“I put the life jacket on lock it, that’s rule number one,” said Mendes.

He also brings two sets of paddles and keeps tabs on the weather.

“It’s pretty much a weapon it’s not a toy. You have to learn to respect it. You have to know how to understand the wind changes,” said Mendes.

Lieutenant Shannon Andrew says if you’re going out on the water this holiday weekend, be prepared.

“We’ve seen an increase in boating traffic and paddle craft along Memorial Day. In the northeast over the last year we had 20 fatalities people going out unprepared without life jackets,” said Lt. Shannon Andrew, Waterways Management Division Chief of the US Coast Guard.

Andrew says always tell someone where you are going. Wear life jackets, bring a whistle, a flashlight at night, have back up plans in case of an emergency and don’t boat under the influence.

“If you label your kayak and put your contact information on we can call and make sure you’re safe,” said Andrew.

Just like Mendes, you can be ready for any surprises to set yourself up for a great time.

“I love the scenery, it’s very relaxing,” said Mendes.

The US Coast Guard says it’s very important to have a cell phone with you because you do want to have a way to communicate in case you run into trouble.

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