The following letter about boating safety is from businessman Steve Rossetti.
As a life-long resident of Long Island and life-long boater, I have spent countless hours enjoying our beautiful waters with my friends and family. Our world-class beaches, boating, sailing, and fishing are among the best parts of our quality of life we cherish here on Long Island. Many Long Island residents consider these to be the main reasons that they choose to live and raise their families here. But unfortunately, recent events have shown all of us that a beautiful day at sea can turn tragic at a moment’s notice
I have a great deal of experience in this matter and believe that I am qualified to speak for many in the boating community. I have a captains license and master certification from the United States Coast Guard and have spent many hours training in boating safety. That is why I, along with many other boaters and public safety advocates, strongly support Legislator Steve Stern’s “Suffolk’s Safer Waterways Act” and urge the Suffolk County Legislature to pass it without delay.
Unbelievably, currently there is no requirement for adults in New York State to complete a boating safety course in order to operate a pleasure craft in our waters.
This law will require all boaters operating a vessel on Suffolk County waterways to complete an approved boating safety course, which will provide essential training about the “Rules of the Road” for boaters, education about equipment and navigation and emergency response training in the event of an accident.
Our local Power Squadrons and Coast Guard Auxiliaries administer these courses. No class will prevent all accidents and of course boaters should demonstrate common sense when operating a vessel. But more than common sense is needed to safely operate a boat on Long Island’s busy waters.
This important initiative is long overdue and I hope that it will be enacted into law and help protect all of us who enjoy our waterways.