National Safe Boating Week is May 21 – 27, 2022
What better way to welcome the warmer seasons than by feeling the ocean’s breeze through your hair, the sun prickling your skin, and gazing out at the water? The answer to most is, “nothing!” Although the statistics on injury and accidents in the sea are slim to none compared to those on land, the truth of the matter is that they still happen. In 2020, 767 people died as a result of boating accidents and 3,191 were injured in the United States alone.
This week kicks off the Annual National Safe Boating Campaign that aims to remind boaters that adventure and fun can still be had without jeopardizing the safety of yourself and your passengers.
Going boating can be a wonderful way to explore the open waters and stay cool in the summer heat. However, boating can carry significant safety hazards if you aren’t careful. Without proper precautions in place, a boating mishap could easily lead to extensive property damage, various injuries and—in severe cases—drowning or death. To keep yourself and your passengers safe on the water, follow these boating best practices:
General Boating Precautions
- Dock at a marina that has standpipes, fire extinguishers, good lighting, surveillance cameras and security measures in place.
- Always wear personal flotation devices when on the water, especially those that cannot swim and children.
- Do not swim near a marina since boaters cannot see you when they are trying to dock.
- Wear nonslip shoes on the boat and dock.
- Keep your boat in good condition with all equipment meeting safety standards established in your area.
- Assure that the marina has the proper power voltage for your boat.
- Add fuel to portable tanks on the dock only—never on the deck of your boat.
- Use forward and reverse at an idle speed when docking and moving your boat near the marina.
- Have bumpers, mooring lines, and boat hooks ready before docking.
- Keep all body parts in the boat until you have come to a complete stop.
- Tie the line that holds the boat against the wind first when docking.