I think it’s very likely that DNR, the Department of Natural Resources, will stop you at least once while on the water. Well, the probability of being stopped, boarded, and checked by DNR is a lot more likely if you are perhaps a little bit younger looking, have many people on the boat, and look like you are having a “good time.” I learned this lesson early on growing up in Charleston, SC. Flashing sirens, guns in holster, the boarding of the boat, and the questioning while potentially having a mini buzz used to make me cringe just thinking about it.
I’m been stopped a total of 3 times by DNR, and like always, I had my registration, life jackets for everyone on board, flares, fire extinguisher, and whistle ready for inspection. It’s necessary to have all of the above mentioned on board at all times while on the water. And if you are salt water fishing, then you must have a valid salt water fishing license, valid! If you have fishing poles in the boat, you have to have your fishing license. For a lot of people, these checks can seem like a real hassle, but we should always keep in mind that it’s for our own safety, and it discourages improper fishing practices.
I expect to get checked every time I’m on the water or at the boat landing. Especially if there is a storm approaching like Tropical Storm Hanna or Hurricane Ike. In fact, I make the most of it and take pictures. Thanks DNR.