Extra law enforcement are patrolling the Reservoir this weekend - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Extra law enforcement are patrolling the Reservoir this weekend

MADISON COUNTY, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

As hot temperatures draw visitors to the Ross Barnett Reservoir this Memorial Day weekend, law enforcement officials are keeping a close watch to ensure everyone has a safe holiday.

Boating and swimming can make for a fun afternoon.

However, officers say alcohol can be just as dangerous on the water as it is on the highway.

"Holiday weekends, especially in the summer, there's a lot of alcohol usage. Which that's fine on the lake. However, if you're gonna boat and drive make sure you have a designated driver, just as you would in a car," said Reservoir Police Chief Perry Waggener.

Waggener reminds reservoir patrons glass beverage bottles are prohibited.

He says extra officers are on duty this weekend. The Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks are also patrolling the lake.

In recent years trash in the water and on the banks have been a big issue. Waggener believes boaters and campers are responding well to a recent push to keep the reservoir garbage free. 

"Last year there was a major push, and the public responded very positively and they've helped us a great deal."

Waggener says boaters should be on the look out for other boaters and skiers, especially on the crowded lake.

Officers are also watching to be sure each watercraft has a life preserver.

"Having properly fitting United States Coast Guard approved personal flotation devices is the single most thing you can have to keep you safe, and it does not need to be locked in a compartment on your boat. It needs to be readily accessible," said Waggener.

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