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Wildlife officers implement more water patrolling on East TN lakes for Labor Day

The holiday weekend has also seen scattered rain storms and boating accidents.

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency Officer Jeff Roberson is one of many wildlife officers patrolling the waters this Labor Day weekend.

"The majority of our holiday weekends are kind of all hands on deck," he said. "They schedule anybody, everybody to be on the lake patrolling."

On a weekend where there has already been a drowning and a serious boat accident in East Tennessee, Roberson said they will be extra vigilant.

He said they will be looking for the essentials on boats on the water.

"So check your equipment before you head out," he said. "Make sure your fire extinguisher is there and charged, your throwables are in good shape, if you are going to be out between sunset and sunrise, verify that your lights work."

Roberson emphasized they will especially be making sure boats have the necessary life jackets.

"Make sure the proper life jackets are there, one for each person on board," he said. "If they [boat riders] are under the age of 12 they have got to have it on all the time. You are not required by law to wear it if you are over the age of 12, but it just makes good sense. It is kind of like a seatbelt: you do not have time to put it on in the middle of an accident. Your life jacket you are not going to have time either. You need to have it on before that accident occurs."

This Labor Day weekend the area is seeing more scattered rain storms. Roberson said more debris tends to show up when there is more rain.

"A requirement that may come into play is having your navigation lights on," he said. "Anytime you would have your car headlights on while driving down the road you should also have your navigation lights on your boat. So periods of restricted visibility such as rain or fog."

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