Coast Guard members responded to more than 40 cases ranging from capsized or disabled vessels, vessels taking on water or beset by weather conditions and persons in the water.
In addition, 12 vessel operators were cited for boating under the influence during the agency's participation in and enforcement of Operation Drywater. Operation Drywater is a national campaign sponsored by the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators with the goal of removing impaired operators from the water and raising awareness of boating under the influence.
During the weekend, the Coast Guard assisted:
* Four people in the water from a capsized canoe, and two people who swam out to assist, Sunday afternoon on Lake Erie near Huron.
* Five people after their vessel struck a breakwall near the entrance to Cleveland Harbor in Cleveland.
* 10 disabled vessels on Lake Michigan with a total of 28 people.
* A 16-foot Hobbie Cat with eight people aboard beset by the weather near Wilmette, Ill., Saturday evening. All eight people were transferred to a Coast Guard Auxiliary boat and brought to shore.
During the upcoming holiday and throughout the entire boating season, the Coast Guard urges boaters to:
* Wear a life jacket at all times while underway. Donning a life jacket is much harder once you're in the water.
* Obtain a free vessel safety check to ensure your boat and all emergency equipment on board is in working order.
* Be familiar with the areas in which you operate. Operator inattention is one of the leading contributing factors in boating accidents.
* Don't drink and boat. Alcohol is the leading known contributing factor in fatal boating accidents.
* Observe safety zones when watching fireworks from the water.
* Only discharge flare guns during an emergency. The Coast Guard urges boaters not to discharge flare guns during fireworks displays.