Boating season is underway on Tennessee waters.
Tennessee Wildlife Resource officers are patrolling lakes and rivers to ensure boat operators are safe and sober.
“These are boats and they're fun to be in, but it's no different than a vehicle. These are large objects and they can cause a lot of damage. When you mix alcohol, it can cause accidents. People can get hurt. It can be fatal. So we're trying to avoid that,” said TWRA officer Eric Anderson.
TWRA officials are also stressing the use of life jackets.
“If you're in a situation where you might be unconscious or can't reach that life jacket quickly, you're going to being in pretty bad shape,” said Anderson.
According to the U.S. Coast Guard, 84% of people who drown in boating accidents were not wearing life jackets.
With Memorial Day weekend coming up, officials will be out in full force looking for anyone who isn't following the law.
“If we come across an operator that has consumed some alcohol, we may ask that person to submit to some sobriety testing. They can be charged with boating under the influence in Tennessee,” said Anderson.
One person has already drowned in Percy Priest Lake this season.
A 55-year old man went underwater last weekend and never resurfaced.
The search continues for his body.