Experts give water safety tips for Fourth of July

Temperatures are expected to climb Wednesday, so it's going to be a great time to spend outdoors, or even on the water.

But where there is water, there is danger.

"Lifejackets are important,” said Scott Ruppelius with Columbia Dive and Rescue.

If your Fourth of July plans revolve around water, officials are encouraging you to keep safety in mind this upcoming holiday.

"Everyone in the boat needs to have a lifejacket,” said Sgt. Marcus Conner with Franklin County Sheriff. “Whether it’s on them or on the boat it has to be out there with them. It does no good unless it's on the boat."

If you don't have the appropriate number or size of life jackets on board, Conner says you could be fined.

"And they have to be size appropriate,” Conner said. “They can't be five kid lifejackets for six adults. That doesn’t fly."

Scott Ruppelius with Columbia Dive and Rescue said, whether you're in a pool or on the river, make sure you have a designated person keeping an eye on the kids in the water.

"Make sure somebody is watching the water not just assuming someone is watching the water.” Ruppelius said.

Conner said, if there will be alcohol in your Fourth of July plans, designate a specific boat driver who will not be drinking.

"If you've had too much and you go in the water bad things are going to happen," Conner said.

If you need help on the water this Fourth of July, do not hesitate to call authorities.

“If you get in a place where you're in peril, getting swept somewhere call 9-1-1.” Ruppelius said.

Officials are also warning about fireworks and boats. If you're thinking of lighting fireworks off your boat... don't do it! Most boats are made of fiberglass and can be highly flammable.

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