State trooper expects more activity on waterways because of coronavirus

Boating safety for Memorial Day weekend

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (WBRC) - Memorial Day weekend couldn’t come soon enough for some people WBRC found on Lake Tuscaloosa Friday.

“Business as usual as far as I can see. Open air, people not getting too close,” Steve Ledbetter described.

He spent the morning on the lake while out with his family. Boats and personal watercraft jetted across the waves while law enforcement kept an eye out for anything dangerous or illegal.

“We’ll be looking for careless, reckless operators. We’ll be looking for people that’s not using their kill switch, small children under the age of 8 not wearing their life jacket. Of course, we’ll be looking for people that’s operating or using alcohol as well,” according to Freddie Ingram.

Ingram, an Alabama State Trooper who patrol waterways in west Alabama, expects this will be a busy weekend because of COVID-19.

“You know with the coronavirus going on. We’ve had a lot of people that have been indoors. It’s time for them to get out. Everybody is getting cabin fever. The water is beautiful, the lake is nice so I believe we’ll have a lot of traffic,” Ingram explained.

Ledbetter said there’s more than enough room to social distance here. “The freedom about being out, outside, not being cooped up.”

We saw one person wearing a mask at the marina where state troopers dock their boat on Lake Tuscaloosa. Even though masks aren’t required, we were told that man has an underlying health issue. So some people are still taking personal precautions when it comes to COVID-19.

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