Lake Coeur d'Alene

Coeur d'Alene, ID - In a few weeks, the waters of Lake Coeur d'Alene will be filled with boats.

With almost 25 miles of lake to cover, it's training day.

Six seasonal marine deputies were hired on by the Kooteani County Sheriff's Office in time for another busy summer.

"We plan on augmenting those with full time guys from the road during overtime shifts that'll help out as well," Will Klinkefus, a sergeant with the sheriff's office said.

The new deputies were put through the ringer, Doing traffic stops, boat inspections and field sobriety checks.

Statistically, Lake Coeur d'Alene has been a hot bed for drunk boating.

According to the Kootenai County Sheriff's Office, last summer, 48 people were charged with operating a vessel under the influence.

That's close to double the amount of OUI's reported statewide in 2017, that number was 26.

And that number of OUI's is higher than the 21 OUI's that were reported by KCSO in the summer of 2017.

Couple that with over 3,000 boat inspections and 230 citations, this training is vital.

"We just want folks to be safety conscious, safety in mind any time they are in the water," Sergeant Klinkefus said.

The Sheriff's Office will start their increased patrols on Memorial Day weekend and will occur on other holidays this summer.

Idaho State Parks and Recreation offers free boater safety classes that are offered. 

For more information, click here

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