Coast Guard reports zero boating deaths on Lake Tahoe |

Coast Guard reports zero boating deaths on Lake Tahoe

From left to right: Jim Snell, Don Morrison, Bill Stolz, Bruce Thee, Mike Lawrence, Jack Leth, Tom Komadina and Dave Young. These are members from the four United States Coast Guard Auxiliary Sierra Division Flotillas: North Lake Tahoe, South Lake Tahoe, Reno and Carson City, conducting qualifications for coxswain and boat crew.

The Officer In Charge at Coast Guard Station Lake Tahoe in Lake Forrest, Senior Chief Daniel Bennett, reported at the recent Sierra Division Coast Guard Auxiliary Change of Watch Ceremony and Awards Dinner there were zero boating deaths on Lake Tahoe between October 2008 and October 2009. This is a far cry from the eight boating related deaths that occurred on Lake Tahoe the first year Senior Chief Bennett arrived to take command of Coast Guard Station Lake Tahoe.

Outgoing Coast Guard Auxiliary Sierra Division Commander, Dee Dee Kincade of Incline Village, Nev., equates the statistic to the efforts of the agencies and people who patrol and educate boaters in and around Lake Tahoe.

Coast Guard personnel at Coast Guard Station Lake Tahoe have increased their patrols and boardings in the past year. The Sierra Division of the Coast Guard Auxiliary (the uniformed and volunteer arm of the Coast Guard in Lake Tahoe ) spent more than 2,300 hours patrolling Lake Tahoe in 2009 , providing escort to events and regattas on Lake Tahoe, completing 706 free vessel safety checks, and educating boaters about through boater safety classes. Police and sheriff boat patrols also played a big part in eliminating boating-related deaths on Lake Tahoe last year.

Lake Tahoe Marine dealers, Marina operators, and boat rental companies are also helping by educating boaters to and#8220;think ahead and be safe when boating on Lake Tahoe.and#8221;

Ed Lyngar of the Nevada Department of Wildlife has been great at providing boaters with safe boating literature. and#8220;It is the combined efforts of everyone that has resulted in zero boating related deaths on Lake Tahoe last year.

According to Commander Kincade more hands are needed to help prevent boating-related deaths on Lake Tahoe. The Sierra Division of the Coast Guard Auxiliary is looking for new volunteer members to provide service to their country and uphold the traditions of the United States Coast Guard and the United States Coast Guard Auxiliary.

The Coast Guard Auxiliary is seeking members with wide variety of skills including boating, teaching, marketing and finance. Help is needed on and off the lake. Interested parties should visit or call Joe Harris at (650) 279-9159.

and#8212;Submitted to the Sun

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