Texas Game Wardens conduct safety checks on more than 11,000 vessels over July 4th weekend
AUSTIN, Texas - Thousands of Texans headed out to lakes, rivers, and coastal bays to celebrate the Fourth of July.
Texas Game Wardens conducted safety checks on more than 11,000 vessels in Texas between Friday and Sunday in an effort to ensure everyone stayed safe on the water, says the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department.
Wardens issued 1,061 citations and 1,348 warnings for various boating safety law violations and arrested 42 people for Boating While Intoxicated. One person was charged with Driving While Intoxicated. Another 34 people were arrested for other charges.
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Texas Game Wardens conducted multiple search-and-rescues over the weekend according to game warden Cody Jones, TPWD Assistant Commander for Marine Enforcement.
TPWD says that on San Jose Island, game wardens rescued three individuals whose vessel became inoperable and washed ashore. All three of the individuals were returned safely to the Port Aransas Marina.
In Austin, four wardens responded to a capsized boat on Lake Travis where two occupants were hanging on to a floating kneeboard in the water when the wardens arrived. Four others had already been removed from the water and wardens were able to bring the other two occupants safely aboard the patrol boats.
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Wardens also rescued a swamped kayaker and located a missing juvenile on Lake Alan Henry.
Additionally, game wardens investigated 21 boating accidents across the state and three boating-related fatalities on Lake J.B. Thomas, Clear Fork of the Brazos River, and Lake Bastrop. There were also seven open water drownings over the holiday weekend, says TPWD.