DNREC Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police Blotter: June 17-23

Reminder for the week: Observe safety precautions when towing water skiers, tubers, and knee-boarders

DOVER (June 28, 2019) – To achieve public compliance with laws and regulations through education and enforcement actions that help conserve Delaware’s fish and wildlife resources and ensure safe boating and public safety, DNREC’s Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police officers between June 17-23 made 2,210 contacts with anglers, boaters, and the general public, issuing 38 citations. Officers responded to 69 complaints regarding possible violations of laws and regulations or requests to assist the public. A Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police presence continued at the C&D Canal Conservation Area and Michael N. Castle Trail.

Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police Actions

Citations issued by category, with the number of charges in parentheses, included:

Fisheries Conservation: Recreational: Possession of undersized blue crabs (4), crab pot tampering (1), tending over-the-limit crab pots (2), possession of a prohibited shark (1), unlicensed fishing (1), and no Fisherman Information Network (FIN) number (2).

Boating & Boating Safety: No life jacket on a child age 12 or younger as required by law (4), operating a personal watercraft without required life jackets (2), jumping the wake of another vessel (1), waterskiing in a prohibited area (1)*, negligent operation of a motor vessel (1), failure to observe slow no wake (4), no boat ramp certificate (1), no boating education certificate (2), and operating an unregistered vessel (2)*.

Other: Trespassing after hours on a state wildlife area (8)* and littering (1)*.

*Includes citation(s) issued at the C&D Canal Conservation Area.

DNREC’s Division of Fish & Wildlife recognizes and thanks the majority of anglers, hunters, and boaters who comply with and support Delaware’s fishing, hunting, and boating laws and regulations. Citizens are encouraged to report fish, wildlife, and boating violations to the Delaware Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police by calling 302-739-4580 or through the DENRP Tip app on a smartphone, which can be downloaded free of charge by searching “DENRP Tip” via the Google Play Store or the iTunes App Store. Wildlife violations may also be reported anonymously to Operation Game Theft by calling 800-292-3030, going online to http://de.gov/ogt, or using the DENRP Tip app. Verizon customers can connect to Operation Game Theft directly by dialing #OGT.

Are you AWARE?

Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police remind boaters of some important safety regulations when towing water skiers, tubers, or knee-boarders:

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·         Requires at least three participants – the water skier, the boat operator, and a competent observer.

·         Personal watercraft (PWC) used for towing skiers, tubers, or knee boarders must have enough seats – minimum of three – to carry the operator, observer, and skier.

·         Recreational water skiers, tubers, and knee-boarders must wear lifejackets at all times.

·         Operators and passengers of a personal watercraft, regardless of age, must wear lifejackets at all times.

·         A tow line cannot exceed 75 feet in length.

·         Observe all “slow-no-wake” areas.

·         Avoid traveling at unsafe speeds, including in congested areas.

·         Observe marked “No Water Skiing” areas, which include all marked swimming areas, Assawoman Canal, Rehoboth-Lewes Canal and portions of Indian River Inlet, Roosevelt Inlet, Whites Creek, and the channel through Masseys Landing.

·         Maintain a safe and reasonable distance from shipping lanes, other vessels, persons, and property.

·         Water skiing is prohibited at night between sunset and sunrise, and within 100 feet of persons in the water, piers, docks, floats, wharfs, vessels anchored or adrift, and private or public boat launch ramps.

To report boating, fisheries, and wildlife violations, please call the Delaware Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police 24-hour dispatch line at: 302-739-4580 or 1-800-523-3336.

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