DEEP, U.S. Coast Guard Warn of Debris in Connecticut Rivers

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Leftover debris from Tropical Storm Elsa and this weekend's storm could cause some issues for boaters and swimmers come this weekend.

Long tree logs, stomps and branches can be found along the Connecticut river according to the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection and the U.S. Coast Guard.

"These things can move up on you quickly and can be difficult to navigate around," said Will Healey, a DEEP spokesperson. "They can injure or even damage your vessel."

The U.S. Coast Guards is asking that boaters and swimmers remain vigilant and to ensure they have a river emergency plan before hitting the water.

"Always keep an eye out when you're driving, always be attentive to what's in front of you," said U.S. Coast Guard Petty Officer Third Class John Hightower. "The weather is always the first thing you should check on a boat or going out to swim and you should always ensure you have life vests or jackets on your boat."

The higher water levels is causing issues for fishermen too, like Marcus Collins of Middletown.

"You don't know what's in the river when its so high and when it comes to fishing your pole can get up on everything," said Collins. "Yesterday, I saw a whole tree floating in the river."

Tree log in the Connecticut River in Haddam.

The hazardous conditions could lead to injuries for swimmers and engine or structural damages for boats on the water, according to DEEP. Officials mention that what you see floating in the water may not be something small.

"It might just be a little bit at the surface but beneath the surface it could be much larger," said Healey. "We want people to know their limits and understand that it’s OK to wait a couple of days.”

For more than 20 years, Donna and Ken Griswold have set sail on their boats in Connecticut. The couple tells NBC Connecticut that they've seen their fair share of debris.

"Trees of all sizes not just branches but full branches going by, stomps, barrels, you name it, it's gone by here," said Ken Griswold.

"Some of them are a little bit under the water and you gotta be able to stop before you know it hits the bottom of your boat and hit your motor," said Donna Griswold.

The U.S. Coast Guard along with the Griswolds expect a lot of people to be out on the water this weekend so they're reminding people to remain vigilant while on their boats.

"They really need to be careful and watch out for what's going on around them," said Donna Griswold. "You just keep an eye open and for me it's a little bit easier because I'm up in the air but not everyone is able to get that vantage point like I can," said Ken Griswold.

The U.S. Coast Guard said that they've seen an increase in boating while under the influence of alcohol and ask that boat owners avoid doing so to protect themselves and others. DEEP is asking that swimmers avoid getting in the water for the next few days.

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