Texas Parks and Wildlife Department is hosting the first Comprehensive Boat Accident Investigation course of 2014. This course provided by the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) funded through a United States Coast Guard grant brings 60 law enforcement officers from all across the United States to one location to train on special techniques for investigating boating accidents.
“This course gives law enforcement officers the opportunity to develop their skills in boat accident investigation. The course also provides critical data to help shape boating safety regulations across the country,” said Gary Haupt the Program Manager for the Accident Investigation Course for the NASBLA BOAT Program.
This class is being attended by a very diverse group from federal, state and local jurisdictions from states as far away as Alaska, Kansas, Oklahoma, Florida, and Virginia and one international attendee from Canada. The instructor cadre includes Marine Patrol Officers from Missouri, Wisconsin, Florida and Texas.
“The officers who complete this training receive a solid foundation in understanding the complexities of boating accident investigations. They’ll have more confidence in conducting investigations because they’ll have a better background. We are working towards a more consistent approach and this course provides a national training standard.” said Assistant Commander Cody Jones, TPWD Texas Boating Law Administrator.
“In Texas, our game wardens will leverage this training within our STORM Team which conducts marine accident investigations and forensic reconstruction.” said Col. Craig Hunter, TPWD Law Enforcement Director. “The goal is to improve water safety and reduce water related fatalities. Networking and training with this group of officer’s helps us to improve what we do every day and we sincerely appreciate our partnership with the United States Coast Guard and NASBLA.”