Mon., May 30, 2011 3:57pm (EDT)

Boating Deaths On The Rise
By Noel Brown
Updated: 3 years ago

AUGUSTA, Ga.  —  
As boaters kick off the summer on Georgia’s lakes, water-related deaths are rising. But citations for drunk boating are on the decline. (image courtesy Mark Anderson)
As boaters kick off the summer on Georgia’s lakes, water-related deaths are rising. But citations for drunk boating are on the decline. (image courtesy Mark Anderson)
Boating deaths were up 23 percent in 2010 compared to the previous year according to the Department of Natural Resources.

The agency says drowning by people not in boats also rose 28 percent.

But while the number of fatalities is up, the Morris News Agency says tickets for boating under the influence have fallen sharply over the last few years.

Some critics blame the imbalance on deep cuts to the DNR’s budget forcing the department to send fewer patrols out on the water.

DNR officials say they have the same presence as they did before budget cuts.