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Release Number: 17-207
- For Immediate Release:
- Public Information Office of Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office
- May 18, 2017
- Contact Person:
- Public Information Office : firstname.lastname@example.org
"Operation Safe Bay"
HCSO has initiated Operation Safe Bay with the generous financial support of Port Tampa Bay and West Marine Pro who together provided 100 life jackets.
- May 20, 2017
- Time: 9:00 AM
- Salty Sol Fleishman - Gandy Boulevard Boat Ramp
Deputies with the HCSO Marine Unit have found that most boaters have more than enough life jackets on their boats for the number of people they are carrying, except when a guest unexpectedly brings a child on the boat.
When that person with a child shows up at the dock and the vessel Captain fails to have the appropriate life jackets to fit the child, he is in violation Florida State Statute. Florida State Statute also requires all children 6-years-old and younger must actively wear a life jacket when on a boat under 26 feet in length.
HCSO has initiated Operation Safe Bay with the generous financial support of Port Tampa Bay and West Marine Pro who together provided 100 life jackets that will be stocked at three separate boat ramps in Hillsborough County.
Boaters will utilize an honor system and be allowed to borrow life jackets to ensure the safety of each child. Once the boater returns to the ramp, the boater can return the vest for the next user. The life jackets will be available in two sizes "under 50 lbs" and "50 lbs to 90 lbs".
The first deployment of the life jackets will be at the Boating Safety Summit planned for 9 a.m. Saturday, May 20, 2017 at the Salty Sol Fleishman - Gandy Boulevard Public Boat Ramp. Later next week, additional life jackets will be stocked at Simmons Park Boat Ramp in Ruskin and Williams Park Boat Ramp in Riverview.
If the members of the public have an interest to donate life jackets, they can contact HCSO Marine Unit at 813-242-5591 who will redistribute the additional life vest as needed to the public boat ramps.