New Boating Law Takes Effect September 1
Texas Take News
San Antonio—As the popular Labor Day weekend approaches, a new law set to go into effect on September 1 hopes to keep people safe while on Texas waterways. .
The so-called “Kali's Law” was passed earlier this year by the Texas Legislature and signed by Gov. Greg Abbott. The new law will now require anyone operating a boat under 26 feet in length to wear a "kill switch" lanyard.
The safety component to “Kali’s Law” is that if the operator of the boat is thrown overboard or falls away from the controls, the kill switch would be triggered, shutting off the engine.
House Bill 337 was introduced by Republican State Representative Lyle Larson of San Antonio. Larson dubbed the bill as “Kali’s Bill” 16-year-old Kali Gorzell, who died in a boating accident in 2012 near Port Aransas.
The Smithson Valley high school student was fishing with friends off Port Aransas when the boat went out of control and Kali was thrown overboard.
Kali was struck by the propeller, which was still running because the engine's kill switch was not engaged.
Larson’s House Bill 337 amends the Water Safety Act of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Code, to create an offense punishable by a fine.