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The kids get out of school tomorrow, and summer officially starts. This promises to be a busy boating season for Austinites on Lake Travis. As you may recall, in 2006, Lake Travis was low due to the drought, and then last summer we had record amounts of rain and flooding, closing the lake for several weeks.

With the increased traffic comes the increased risk of boating accidents. Fortunately, my friend Dave Mittleman, a Lansing, Michigan personal injury attorney, had a post on boating safety. Dave’s tips included:

*Make sure you wear a life jacket. The United States Coast Guard estimates 90 percent of all drowning victims were not wearing a life jacket.

* Do not drive your boat at excessive or unsafe speed.

* Make sure to be aware of other boats on the water, but don’t forget about water skiers, tubers, jet skiers, and wave runners.

* Do not drink and drive a boat.

* Perform a safety inspection of your boat in order to avoid problems when boating.

* Tell someone on land who is with you on the boat, where you are headed, and how long you expect to be gone.

The Red Cross also has its own set of safe boating guidelines that you might find helpful.

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