Prime boating season is upon us. Which means boat safety season is upon us as well. Furthermore, sales of recreational boats have been growing at a steady clip for seven consecutive years now, according to the National Marine Manufacturers Association. Fortunately, the number of boating accidents isn’t growing at the same pace. Accidents were down nearly 4% in 2018.
Let’s keep this Boat Safety Wave Rolling
Wear Life Jackets
There are different types of life jackets for various activities. You’ve got your vest-type jackets, offshore jackets, and even some made for water-skiing and kayaking.
So ask yourself the right questions before going boating.
- What will you be doing?
- Where you’ll be headed?
- Who will be with you?
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Each individual on board (even pets) should have a life jacket that fits properly. Most importantly, they should wear it at all times. There probably won’t be time to throw one on when something bad happens unexpectedly. According to the Coast Guard, in most cases of boating-related drowning, life jackets were on board but they weren’t worn by victims.
Boat Safety Equipment
There are plenty of other items you should have (or consider having) on your boat to increase safety. Fire extinguishers are required on most boats, even small vessels. So, make sure you have the right type and that you know how to use it. You should install a carbon-monoxide detector if you have an enclosed area on your boat.
Cell phones don’t always work well when you’re out on the water. Take this opportunity to use a VHF radio and feel like a true captain. These can ensure you’re able to call for help. Additionally, t might be a good idea to get an emergency position-indicating radio beacon in case you get lost. Finally, you should always carry an anchor and signal lights no matter the time of day.
Launching the Boat
Keeping your boat’s systems and equipment in good shape is the first step to preventing problems. I advise putting in the time to perform inspections and maintenance tasks as needed. Also, always check the weather before any trip you take.
The fun can begin as soon as you hit the water! I love that song out of StepBrothers as much as the next guy. However, let’s make sure NOT to crash the boat. Don’t speed, drink or allow excessive distractions. Finally, and most crucially, always invite your local insurance agents out to sea with you. Maybe you can score yourself a discount.
If you are ever concerned about boat safety you can give us a call. Also, click here for a free watercraft quote.