life-fullORILLIA– Police officers within the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) Central Region have been working hard this summer to continue with a summer long seasonal education program which is focused on water safety. The "OPP Challenge" is focused on boat owners and boaters to wear a personal floatation device (PFD) at all times while out on the water.

"Water safety is a shared responsibility and any water related death that involves drowning is preventable especially when life jackets or PFD's are used. Having a PFD available on your boat is not simply enough – you need to be wearing it at all times" says Chief Superintendent John Tod, Regional Commander of the OPP Central Region.

With the last official long weekend of the summer quickly approaching, the OPP wants everyone to keep their heads above the water and wearing a PFD will allow you to float until help arrives in the event of an unexpected water related incident. In one such occurrence where a PFD was worn this summer, an operator of personal watercraft was rendered unconscious after a collision with another vessel. Responding officers determined that the outcome could have been fatal if a PFD was not utilized.

Chief Superintendent John Tod says "our message to boaters in Central Region is simple, please wear your PFD and by doing so, you will be contributing and responsibly doing your part in making our water ways safer for all those who use them".