Photo Courtesy of The U.S. Coast Guard.

The Coast Guard, along with the National Safe Boating Council, is encouraging boaters to take part in National Safe Boating Week, which runs until May 24, 2013.

The purpose of National Safe Boating Week is to promote safe boating practices for recreational boaters, in an effort to reduce preventable accidents and deaths.

Many people agree riding a bike without a helmet or being in a car without a seatbelt can be risky behavior; however, each year boaters take to the lakes, rivers and seas without wearing the most fundamental element of safe boating – lifejackets.

Nationwide, 379 people drowned while not wearing their lifejackets during 2012, according to the 2012 Coast Guard Recreational Boating Statistics Report.

The Coast Guard encourages boaters to take a safer approach during the 2013 boating season by ensuring they have a Coast Guard-approved lifejacket and wear it while on the water. Other safety measures that can save your life are:

  • Have your vessel inspected by the Coast Guard Auxiliary or Power Squadron.
  • File a float plan with someone who knows when you are leaving and when you plan to be back.
  • Make sure you have working sound-producing devices in the event of an emergency in low visibility.
  • Ensure flares are up to date and in good working order.

For a comprehensive list of boating safety checklists and instructional information, CLICK HERE.

For more information on lifejacket safety as a part of National Safe Boating Week, CLICK HERE.

To file an electronic float plan, CLICK HERE.

For a vessel safety check, CLICK HERE.


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