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Recreational activities on natural bodies of water pose unique safety risks and hazards. With scorching hot summer temperatures, getting out on a boat or jet ski with your family and loved ones can be a great way to spend an afternoon or weekend. But without proper safety precautions in place, a fun-filled afternoon can suddenly turn to disaster with lake injuries. That is what happened recently in a high-profile celebrity case involving R&B singer Usher’s stepson.

Earlier this month, Kile Glover, the 11-year-old stepson from a former marriage of Usher was involved in a jet ski and tubing accident that left him brain dead. Apparently Glover and a friend were tubing behind a pontoon boat when they were struck by a jet ski. Both suffered head injuries and were airlifted to a hospital in Atlanta. Glover passed away this week after his mother made the decision to take him off life support. The accident that lead to his death is still being investigated. Not all injuries can be avoided but to try to protect yourself and your family, always make sure that jetskis and boats are away from people.

Sometimes, however, hazards out on the water come from unexpected sources. This summer, three electrocution deaths at the Lake of the Ozarks Missouri have drawn attention to the safety of lakeside structures. In July two siblings, ages 8 and 13, were electrocuted while swimming near a dock that may have been improperly wired. Just a few days later a 27-year old woman was electrocuted in a similar accident while swimming near a different dock. In the wake of these tragic incidents, residents have been calling in electricians to inspect dock wiring that in some cases may be decades old. Also contributing to the danger of water electrocutions is a lack of adequate regulations which lead to the Lake of the Ozarks Missouri injuries. According to some area residents and electricians, some key components to dock safety include a ground fault interrupter and an emergency breaker handle to cut off all power along the waterfront. It's not too late to have your dock wiring inspected by a certified electrician – protect your family and everyone else at the lake!

Lindsay Rakers, Missouri and Illinois injury attorney.

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