CLEAR LAKE, Iowa - With the summer heat in full force, many people are heading out on the water to find some relief and relaxation, but the past few days have proven to be dangerous on local lakes.
A 17 year-old girl is recovering at St. Mary's Hospital in Rochester after two watercrafts collided on Clear Lake on Friday, and in Freeborn County, two girls are expected to be OK after a boat hit their jet ski on Fountain Lake on Saturday.
Those accidents are serving as a serious reminder to take safety precautions when out on the water.
Both Iowa and Minnesota require kids ages 12-17 to undergo boater education and take an education course in order to operate a motor boat or personal watercraft.
John Howell is a rentals worker at Clear Lake Boats, and says that despite the two accidents, he doesn't believe there needs to be stricter regulations on top of what's in place now.
"I think the course itself does a really good job of preparing people, but I just feel that more people should, because I know there's a lot of people that don't take that course. I just think that everybody should take a look at that at one point in time or another," Howell said.
However, he adds that the accidents should not deter those from operating a jet ski, even if the operators are teenagers.
"It's a lot of fun, and if you know what you're doing, there shouldn't be a problem at all. It's just the people that aren't very familiar with the craft, and just the water at all, they're more of a hazard," Howell added.
He also advises operators to be aware of their surroundings, in particular other nearby boaters and shallow areas close to shorelines.