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Kali's Law: Kill switch boating law now in effect in Texas

A new Texas law aims to save lives by requiring a lanyard to be attached to the kill switch in some boats.

COMAL COUNTY, Texas — This Labor Day weekend, a new Texas law went into effect. It requires the drivers of some boats to be connected to a switch that shuts off the engine.

Kali’s Law was implemented this year. The parents of Kali Gorzell pushed the boating requirement after their daughter died. Kali was thrown off a boat and hit by the boat propeller.

On Monday, many took their boats out to Canyon Lake with friends and family, and while most know about kill switches, not everyone knew about the new boating rule.

Kali’s Law requires the driver of a boat 26 feet or shorter to have a cord or lanyard connected to the kill switch, which shuts off the engine immediately if the driver or someone on the boat falls off.

RELATED: Texas governor signs 'Kali's Law' after teen dies in 2012 boat accident

Robert Gomez said he typically has a kill switch cord, but he forgot it. He said he plans to take it slow on the lake to keep his family safe. He admitted he wasn’t aware of the new law.

Many on the lake say the new regulation will help save lives. “You never know what is going to happen, whether you hit a road-wave or any type of wave that could send you off course," Brandon Cicero said.

In 2018, 177 people were injured by a propeller and 25 were killed, according to U-S Coast Guard statistics.

A violation of Kali's Law will result in a $200 fine.

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