The Royal Canadian Marine Search and Rescue boating safety team will be on local lakes this summer.

The Royal Canadian Marine Search and Rescue boating safety team will be on local lakes this summer.

Safety team hits local lakes

The Royal Canadian Marine Search and Rescue boating safety team in Vernon will be coming alongside boaters this summer.

The Royal Canadian Marine Search and Rescue boating safety team in Vernon will be coming alongside boaters this summer.

Boat owners will be offered a free safety check under a new program sponsored by Transport Canada.

“Our boating safety team in Vernon will have more opportunity to connect with the boating public, help boaters ensure they have all of the safety gear they need and promote what we call search and rescue prevention,” said Jim Lee, RCM-SAR president.

The vessel safety survey program is voluntary and will be provided as a courtesy to boaters who request it. Crews will approach vessels and offer to check items such as personal floatation devices, signaling devices, fire extinguishers, bailers, radar reflectors, navigation charts and other items.

Vernon RCM-SAR crews do not provide enforcement.

“The waters in the North Okanagan are not only fun but they can be dangerous and these safety surveys will reduce the likelihood of people needing to be rescued,” said Bob Montguire, Vernon station leader.

“It also allows us to spend more time on the water along with our regular training and shore-based boating safety education.”

The Vernon RCM-SAR team uses a 19-foot Boston Whaler boat.

For more information, go to http://rcmsar.com/sar-prevention/vessel-safety-survey-program