Boat deaths sharpen weather warnings

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The actions of commercial boat operators leading to deaths, overturned craft and overnight tourist strandings give a  special edge to Carnival weekend alerts from The Panama Maritime Authority (AMP).

A warning of adverse sea conditions, on both coasts, was issued by the AMP on Saturday, February 10, and extends through Valentine’s Day, Feb.14.

According to the Authority, the notice is aimed mainly at small boats with outboard motors and pleasure yachts.

“To prevent, preserve and guarantee the security of citizenship at sea, the AMP recommends that boat captains and operators take into account the climatic conditions before sailing; If these are adverse, it is advisable not to sail until the weather improves,” says the alert.

Three people died in a recent overturning incident, and a group of tourists had to swim for 30 minutes and spend the night on an island in another.

Two pleasure boat captains have been charged with being impaired.

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