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December 17, 2008

12/17/08 Waterfowl hunters throughout Indiana are being strongly reminded, by Indiana Conservation Officers, that a life jacket will not work unless it is being worn.   “Our “Wear It” campaign to promote life jacket use is not just for the warm weather months” said Michael Crider, Director of the Department of Natural Resources Law Enforcement Division.   “Just ask the 4 waterfowl hunters who were forced into the Ohio River last week after the bow of their boat went under water.  Fortunately they were close enough to swim ashore unhurt.  Under stressful conditions, such as what these hunters went through, there is just not enough time to put on a life jacket, and with the frigid water pulling every ounce of warmth from your body it won’t take long until you won’t be able to swim anymore” Crider said

Crider says that there are reasonably priced inflatable life vests offered by a number of manufacturers that are comfortable and non-restricting with most available in camouflage.  Prices range from $50-$150.  For those who wish to have more protection from the elements, yet be afforded the capability to act as a life jacket, look no further than a float coat or jacket.  These also are available in camouflage.  Prices range around $150.  Float coats and inflatable vests can be purchased through your favorite sporting goods store or catalog retailer and would be a great Christmas gift.

Indiana law requires (1) United States Coast Guard approved wearable lifejacket per person and (1) throwable device for boats over 16 feet in length.

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