Boating

L.D.W.F. AGENTS RECOVER SECOND VICTIM OF LAKE PALOURDE BOATING INCIDENT

Release Date: 06/23/2010

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division agents today recovered the body of a teenaged girl who has been missing since entering the water in Lake Palourde this past weekend.

LDWF recovered the body of Theresa Hidalgo, 18, of Gramercy, near the west shore in Lake Palourde.  Hidalgo was in a 16-foot bass boat along with husband and wife Michael, 39, and Andrea St. Amant, of Donaldsonville on Sunday, June 20 in Lake Palourde.  Search teams recovered the body of Michael St. Amant on Monday, June 21.

According to Andrea St. Amant, Michael and Theresa fell overboard from Michael's boat around 2:30 p.m. on Sunday, June 20.  Andrea said that she did not know how to operate the boat and did not have cell phone service.  After drifting for a few minutes, Andrea said she was able to flag down some nearby jet skiers who then were able to get to an area with cell phone service to call 911.

LDWF Enforcement Division agents received the 911 call and arrived on the scene within minutes and began searching for the missing boaters until nightfall.  Other agencies that participated in the search for Michael and Theresa were the St. Mary's and St. Martin's Parish Sheriff's Offices, the Patterson Police Department, Stephensville Fire Department and Morgan City Fire Department.

For more information, contact Adam Einck at 225-765-2465 (office) or 225-354-9517 (cell) or aeinck@wlf.la.gov.

2010-197

L.D.W.F. ENFORCEMENT DIVISION COOPERATING IN OPERATION DRY WATER JUNE 25-27

Release Date: 06/22/2010

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Law Enforcement Division (LDWF/LED) agents will take part in this weekend’s Operation Dry Water, a nationally coordinated effort focusing on increased boating safety.

From June 25 through 27, agents will be out in force patrolling state waterways for boat operators whose blood alcohol content exceeds the state limit of .08 percent. Operation Dry Water includes increased patrols as well as boater education.

"We want people to be safe and have fun while boating recreationally," commented Lt. Col. Jeff Mayne, LDWF’s state Boating Law Administrator.  "But alcohol use has become the leading contributing factor in fatal recreational boating accidents.  We recommend that boaters avoid drinking alcoholic beverages at all times, and we will have zero tolerance for anyone found operating a boat under the influence of alcohol or drugs on our waters."

Alcohol can impair a boater’s judgment, balance, vision and reaction time.  It can increase fatigue and susceptibility to the effects of cold-water immersion.  Sun, wind, noise, vibration and motion intensify the side effects of alcohol, drugs and some prescription medications.  

Louisiana had 32 fatalities from boating crash incidents in 2009.  Alcohol was again the leading primary cause of those boating fatal incidents leading to 24 percent of the fatalities.  Out of the 32 fatalities from boating crash incidents, 17 were drowning and 15 of those were not wearing a life jacket.  Nationwide, statistics from 2008 reveal that 17 percent of all boat incident fatalities were a direct result of alcohol or drug us.

Impaired boaters caught this weekend can expect penalties to be severe.  In Louisiana, a DWI on the water is the same penalties and fines as they are on the road and include jail time, fines and loss of driving and boating operator privileges.   

“There will be arrests this weekend and some boaters will face the consequences of operating a boat while impaired," added Lt. Col. Mayne.  "But we'd much rather arrest someone than to have to tell their friends and family they're never coming back."

Operation Dry Water is a joint program involving the LDWF/LED, the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) and the U.S. Coast Guard.  More information is available at www.operationdrywater.org.

 For more information contact Lt. Rachel Zechenelly at 225-765-2984 or rzechenelly@wlf.la.gov.

2010-195

FUN Camp

 Families Understanding Nature Camp

FUN means Families Understanding Nature and offers parents and their children an opportunity to spend a weekend in the outdoors, re-establishing bonds and honing outdoor skills.

They participate in a variety of activities (shooting, fishing, canoeing, camping, and ecology) to develop a greater appreciation for the outdoors, become more comfortable in an outdoor environment and have fun. Children must be between 10 and 13 years old to attend. There are no facilities for children younger than 10 years old.

NOTE: Parents and boys will be in one barracks wing while parents and girls will be in another wing.

Families Understanding Nature Camp 2014 Schedule

Father-Child Families Understanding Nature Camp: March 18-20, 2016

Mother-Child Families Understanding Nature Camp: October 2-4, 2015

ACTIVITIES

Rifle Shooting
Firearm safety and marksmanship will be reviewed. Actual shooting of .22 caliber rifles will be conducted under an instructor's supervision. All firearms, ammunition, targets and safety equipment will be provided.

Shotgun Shooting
Firearm safety and marksmanship will be reviewed. Actual shooting of 20 gauge shotguns will be conducted under an instructor's supervision. All firearms, ammunition, targets and safety equipment will be provided.

Archery
Learn basic archery fundamentals. Practice what you have learned by shooting arrows with a bow under an instructor's supervision. All bows, arrows, targets and safety equipment provided.

Canoeing
Learn the basics of canoe handling and safety. Then take a canoe trip, and visit a real beaver dam, around beautiful Indian Creek Reservoir with one of our instructors. Canoes, paddles and Personal Flotation Devices furnished.

Fishing
The basics of fishing - rods and reels, baits, tackle and accessories will be covered. The instructor will provide tips on casting and where to find fish. There will be plenty of time to wet a hook. All the fishing gear will be provided, or feel free to bring your own.

Compass Reading
Learn how to use a compass and try your hand on a simple compass course. Parents and children work together to learn basic orienteering skills.

Nature Study Hike
Our instructor will lead you on a hike. You'll identify some plants and animals, collect and identify some aquatic organisms and learn how to improve your observation skills. Tips and ideas will be given on how to have a safe and enjoyable hike and some things to do on your hike.

Camping
Saturday night all participants will camp out and cook supper and breakfast. Instructors will guide you in setting up a camp, building a fire, cooking and clean up. Tents and cooking gear will be provided.

For more information on Father/Child Families Understanding Nature Camp, contact Chad Moore @ 318-371-3043 or email cmoore@wlf.la.gov  and Karen Crabtree @ 318-766-8144 or email kcrabtree@wlf.la.gov for Mother/Child Families Understanding Nature Camp or Families Understanding Nature Camp.

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