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La Crosse Police will be on the Mississippi River enforcing boat patrol rules as season picks up

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LA CROSSE, Wis. (WXOW) - Four out of five recreational boating deaths are caused by drowning and boat patrol officers said they'll dole out citations to prevent people from adding to this statistic.

La Crosse Police Sgt. Joe Wiegrefe shared there three biggest rules:

  1. Always wear your life jacket.
  2. Do not drink alcohol and drive a boat because it could earn you a Boating-Under-the-Influence ticket.
  3. Limit distractions while boating.

"Make sure you're drinking water and again just pay attention to what's going on around you," Sgt. Wiegrefe said. "Don't trust that other boaters are going to do the right thing you need to be watching where they are and what they're doing and again just have good awareness of what's going on around you."

He said 86% of boating accident deaths happen because boaters were not wearing life jackets and that alcohol is the leading contributor that causes deaths.

Two hour after News 19 spoke to Sgt. Wiegrefe he called the station and said one intoxicated boater crashed into another boat and caused a minor injury.

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Marcus Aarsvold

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