Being on the water and enjoying water sports, fishing or sailing is exciting and fun. Boat safety is key. Anyone operating a boat of any size whether motorized or a paddleboat or canoe needs to understand and practice safety precautions.
A lifejacket should be worn regardless of your level of experience on the water. Even the best swimmer should wear a life jacket at all times. Your boating experience should be a fun and pleasant one and following safety tips should not hinder that.
Some places require that anyone operating a boat have a boat license. A boat safety course may be required and a license will be issues. Some things your exam may ask you about are safety precautions and how to handle certain situations while on the water. Anyone operating a boat should be able to act and think quickly in order to keep them self and their passengers safe in any water conditions. Dealing with traffic of other boaters, swimmers or those using jet skis or water-skis is important. Operating a boat under the influence of alcohol is just as irresponsible as doing so while driving a car. It’s unacceptable.
Different bodies of water have varying rules on how boaters should conduct themselves with respect to speed, parking, and so on so you should be familiar with these regulations when traveling by boat. It is a good idea to ensure you have safety devices with you in order to help anyone you come in contact with or should you encounter problems of your own with your own boat. Knowing the anticipated weather before setting out on your boat is a good idea. Carrying a first aid kit and safety kit in your boat is a very good idea.
What should your safety kit contain? You should have paddles on board regardless of whether or not your boat is motorized. Mechanical problems can happen and you should be able to move your vehicle if necessary. Whistles are a good idea if needing to alert others of a problem. Many cellular phones will not work on a body of water so having a cell phone with you alone is not sufficient. Flares are important if you come into problems at night. Extra clothing, sunscreen, food and water are also a good idea. Putting these items into a waterproof container or bag is important.
Speed and caution are the most important aspects of boat safety. It’s also a good idea to take a first aid or CPR course so that you can help those in trouble. Needless drownings occur every year due to lack of boat safety out on the water.