Boating Safety

tuscaloosa police boat

Although there were no reports of any serious injuries or accidents on Lake Tuscaloosa during the Fourth of July holiday, at least two fatal boat crashes and almost a dozen injuries occurred on two nearby lakes.

Tuscaloosa Police Department’s Lake Patrol encourages boaters to be careful and cautious when driving in local lakes and rivers.

“One of the main things is to make sure you stay on the right side of the lake while you’re riding on the lake,” Officer Shane Sanford said. “Just like driving a car stay on your right-hand side and of course whenever you’re out at night time make sure you use your front and rear lights red and greens, white on the rear.”

A person must be at least 14 years old and have a license to drive a boat by themselves on Alabama’s waterways.

It is illegal for a person to operate a boating vessel under the influence of alcohol or drugs “to a degree which renders him or her incapable of safely” operating a vessel or having a blood-alcohol content of .08% or more.

More information about Alabama’s boat and water recreation laws can be found online at 

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