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Overloaded boats get attention under new rule

FORT PIERRE -- Boaters in South Dakota will want to heed the manufacturer's capacity plates on their watercraft or risk running afoul of law enforcement.

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The state Game, Fish and Parks Commission adopted a new rule Thursday against overloading.

It makes illegal the operation of any boat beyond its stated capacities for persons, weight and total horsepower.

The Legislature's rules review committee will decide in the coming weeks whether to give the go-ahead for it to take effect.

"Our officers have encountered overloading issues from time to time," said Andy Alban, a law enforcement administrator for the Game, Fish and Parks Department.

The commissioners voted unanimously for the new regulation. They also repealed several state rules regarding navigation and adopted the federal navigation rules in their entirety.