How to Keep Yourself Safe While Boating this Summer!
With summer already in full swing, a lot of boaters have put their fishing or pleasure craft in lakes, rivers, or nearby oceans. And with this influx of activity in waters all over the country comes a rise in boating accidents, injuries, and even fatalities. Though boating accidents are often caused by the same common mistakes that lead to road accidents, such as drifting out of a designated travel lane, your risks of injury or incident can be reduced measurably with just a tiny bit of knowledge.
The following five boating safety tips are seen as the most likely to eliminate your risks of accident or injury and allow you to enjoy a long summer of boating fun:
1. Use your safety gear: Statistically, a tremendous percentage of fatalities on the water are due to one simple thing – the people injured or killed were not wearing their lifejackets. Though you are not obliged to have your lifejacket on all the time, it just makes sense to wear it, which is why so many states mandate that children must have them on at all times. In general, you will be obliged to have specific types of lifejackets on board, so why not just put one on and provide yourself with one of the best methods of surviving an accident.
2. Pay attention to the weather: Anyone who has ever been caught on the water during a storm knows the terror it can create. Bursts of wind, rough waters, and flashes of lightning can easily cause serious harm. To avoid such issues, tune into the weather forecast before you leave shore and pay attention to the skies. Keep a radio going, and if a storm is reported in your area, head to shore immediately.
3. Make plans and share them: One of the simplest ways to stay safe on the water this summer is to have a plan. Few boaters feel like plotting out a course of where they are going to be boating during the day, but simply letting a friend on shore know where you are, generally, and when you intend to be at specific points can really save the day. Just imagine having an accident without anyone knowing you are on the water. A plan in the hands of a friend can really prove a lifesaver.
4. Stay sober: You may not know that you can get a DUI on the water, known as a BUI (boating under the influence). However, you can, and boating while under the influence of drugs or alcohol is a major cause of boating fatalities all over the country. When boating, you’re not in control of the waters and currents beneath you and you must be clear-minded to safely steer through them.
5. Be a savvy navigator: Do you know the rules of the road? How about the rules of the water? If not, be sure that you learn where to keep your boat at all times, how to navigate around other vessels, and what tactics you should employ to eliminate or reduce the risks of collision, capsizing, or causing any sort of accidents. It is far too easy to enter into a travel area where your craft does not belong, to overturn a smaller boat with your wake, or to navigate into shallows where you can harm your even destroy your boat.
Whether using a jet ski in Miami or a canoe in Washington, it is not difficult to remain safer on the water this year, and these five tips should help you steer clear of harm, injury, or accident while enjoying a great summer of safe boating. Learn more about boat insurance and the experts at Avante Insurance can go over your options today. Give us a call!.