05-31-2006, 09:16 AM #1
Lake of the Ozarks Memorial Weekend Report
LAKE OF THE OZARKS - Although tens of thousands of boaters made their way to the lake for the three-day Memorial Day holiday, there was a relatively calm start to the summer boating season.
By late Monday afternoon, the Water Patrol reported most boaters were headed off the water and getting ready for the trip home.
In comparison to the 2005 Memorial holiday weekend, the most noticeable change was in the number of injuries. In 2005, the Water Patrol worked 11 accidents over the Memorial Day holiday with a total of 13 injuries.
This weekend, the number of accidents held steady at 11 but there were only two injuries reported.
The Water Patrol arrested 39 drivers for boating while intoxicated compared to 2005 when 44 were arrested over the holiday weekend. Two drug arrests were made on Lake of the Ozarks this year compared to three in 2005.
The official counting period runs from Friday evening to Monday at midnight.
Two adults and two children managed to escape without injury when their boat caught fire Friday afternoon at the 3-mile marker on the Grand Glaize Arm.
According to the Water Patrol, the driver of the boat said both engines on the 1998 38-foot Carver Cruiser had stopped running. When he checked the motor, he could see flames.
He was able to flag down a passing boater and get everyone on the cruiser safely off the vessel. The flames were confined to the engine compartment.
The second accident of the weekend occurred on Saturday at the 3-mile marker when a personal watercraft jumping wakes became airborne. When it landed, the operator’s face slammed into the PWC. The operator was taken to Lake Regional Hospital and treated for facial injuries.
According to the crew of 16 officers and five interns who are on hand to help out for the season, most boaters were well-behaved and courteous. With the exception of a brawl at Lake of the Ozarks State Park Public Beach No. 1, there were no major fights or confrontations.
Things did get a little heated at PB 1 on Saturday when two groups of boaters got into an argument over a guy who was allegedly yelling at a group of women on a boat coming into the docks to flash their breasts.
The men on the boat with the women took exception to his remarks and once they docked, confronted him. He allegedly grabbed a tire iron and hit one of the men. The incident is still under investigation and will be forwarded to the prosecutor when the reports are completed, police said.
Two separate thefts of personal watercraft were reported over the weekend. Several women were intercepted by the Lake Ozark Police Department with a PWC in tow that allegedly belonged to Port Arrowhead.
Early Sunday morning, the Water Patrol had arrested one suspect and was looking for another after they allegedly took a pair of PWCs from a dock on the Grand Glaize Arm for joyrides.
With the exception of a few minor incidents, even Party Cove was relatively quiet.
On Saturday, the Water Patrol estimated there were in the neighborhood of 3,000 boats anchored wall-to-wall in the popular party spot in Anderson Hollow Cove on the Grand Glaize Arm of the lake. By Sunday, the crowd had dwindled down to about 1,500.
“We really had nothing out of the ordinary,” Sgt. Nick Humphrey said. “Saturday was by far the busiest of the three days. Although Memorial Day weekend can get pretty crazy, it isn’t nearly as rowdy as July 4th or Labor Day weekend. We were busy; the officers never slowed down but it didn’t rise to the level we see on those two particular holidays when we get slammed.”
05-31-2006, 09:34 PM #2
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