Kootenai County urges boaters to enjoy lakes responsibly as summ - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Kootenai County urges boaters to enjoy lakes responsibly as summer approaches

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COEUR D'ALENE, Idaho -

Lake Coeur d'Alene and summertime go together like lemonade and a hot day, but the Kootenai County Sheriff's Office says they want you to enjoy the lake responsibly.

As people get ready to enjoy their time out on the water, there are a few things deputies want you to take into consideration.

“The water is high, the water's cold, there's lots of debris still out there from the flooding,” Ryan Higgins said.

Higgins is the lieutenant for the Kootenai County Sheriff’s Office Marine Division.

He knows people are going to go out and celebrate, but he wants people to do it in a safe way.

“They have a designated driver for their boat, BUI's (boating under the influence) is something that we take very seriously,” Lieutenant Higgins said, “that we have a zero tolerance for and if we catch you boating and drinking were going to charge you for that crime."

The most recent numbers indicate the sheriff’s office had a busy summer 2017.

As of September 2nd, 2017, the sheriff’s office wrote 236 citations, the most since 2012.

21 operating under the influence tickets were also given out.

“It can be up to six months in jail and a $1,000 fine, but that's up to the courts to decide,” Lieutenant Higgins said.

Higgins added boaters should also have lifejackets on-board your boat as well.

The Kootenai County Sheriff’s Office also teaches a boat safety course once a month that’s free to the public.

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