Safety Tips to Minimize The Risk of Drowning
By: Crest Pontoon Boats on Friday, August 25, 2023
Boating is beyond fun to do with family and friends, but it can also be dangerous without the proper safety measures. So, it’s important for boaters to know what they're doing and how their actions impact those around them. Here are a few ways to help ensure that your day out on the water is a safe and fun one.
Everyone aboard a boat should be aware of the importance of being alert and following safety precautions. Boating safety regulations should be explained to guests before heading out.
Don’t Drink Alcohol While Boating
We don’t drink and drive cars and drinking while driving a boat is no different. Alcohol impairs one’s judgment and slows reaction time. This shouldn’t just apply to the captain but to all people on board so that everyone can be alert and helpful in the event of an emergency.
Wear a Life Vest
Wearing a life vest on a boat is important, regardless of one's swimming abilities. Life vests need to be U.S. Coast Guard approved. You can look for the USCG stamp on the inside of a life jacket to be sure. The majority of drowning victims are found without a life jacket on. And although it may seem over the top, your life jacket should be on at all times. Situations on the water can change quickly and you may not have time to grab a life jacket before ending up in the water.
Bring Charged Communication Devices
Make sure to have all your communication devices fully charged so you are prepared for any situation that may arise. You will want to be able to contact the Coast Guard should you need to, so make sure you have something with a high frequency range. The Coast Guard monitors a high frequency radio for emergencies 24 hours a day. Beyond that, cell phones are helpful as well.
Avoid Risky Locations
There are many locations that a boat should steer clear of. Oftentimes, there are signs indicating the level of danger in a certain area. These help to prevent boaters that may be new to the area from venturing into it. It’s important to be aware of what signs are communicating for the safety of yourself and everyone on board.
Take Extra Precautions With Children
When children are on board, it’s important to take extra precautions. Children are often curious and need to be reminded of boating safety. Make sure they know the importance of a life jacket and how to use it. It’s also important to make sure they understand where the safest part of the boat is—away from the edge and motor—and how to handle themselves in the water.
Avoid Unnecessary Distractions
It only takes a moment of distraction to find yourself in a scary situation. A boat can hit an obstacle and capsize or a child may disappear from view faster than you think possible. It’s always a good idea to have more than one person on a boat, especially if children are present. Safety measures can never be overstated because they are necessary to prevent drowning and other unfortunate situations.
Staying diligent on the water, having more than one set of eyes on a boat at a time, and following safety procedures can help reduce risks and keep everyone on board safe.