It is important to take safety precautions when people hit the water, especially during the high-traffic times of summer holidays.
Dennis Knowlton has a passion for fishing, but he also knows the dangers.
"I only do that about five, six times a week," he said. "I've got a father-in-law that back when I was about 27 years old we lost my father-in-law."
To stay safe out on the lake you need a like preserver, but fisherman at Smithville Lake also said the most important thing you need to have is a knowledge of the lake.
"You're going to hit that if you don't know it's there and you're going to tear the bottom out of your boat," Knowlton said.
Missouri Highway Patrol State Trooper Kim Davis said the worst incidents often come in the form of a drunk driver.
"Always be prepared for the worst," she said. "If you choose to drink alcohol, we want everybody to watch how much you consume. We want you to designate a driver for the boat."
Davis also offered some other tips on boating safety just in time for Memorial Day weekend.
"Your fire extinguishers are up and running, batteries are good and charged. We see a lot of dead batteries the first part of the year," she said.
She also advises boaters to watch their speeds.
"We don't have roadways. We don't have stop signs. We don't have dotted lines. It's kind of a free-for-all if you will," Davis said.
Despite the dangers, Knowlton said he'll continue pursuing his passion.
"Love it. Fishing's good," he said.
According to the Missouri Highway Patrol, most boats are in the water in the summer months and on holiday weekends.
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