A lazy morning on your boat, calm blue water, wind in your hair, pleasant sunshine on your face – doesn’t it sound amazing? Now, top it off with fishing and a water dive – that is a description of a dream day! As the weather has started warming up, many of us are heading to waterways! Lakes, rivers, and ponds will soon be full of people trying to fish, hunt, camp, enjoy water sports, and relax onboard a boat.
But before heading out with friends and family, it’s important to understand how to keep safe. Even when it shouldn’t, safety during boating takes a backseat sometimes. Most boating accidents are preventable if one takes simple precautions.
So, to keep your pleasure ride from taking a wrong turn check out these seven boating safety tips:
Take a boating safety course.
If you are a beginner, such a course will help you learn the most valuable techniques for operating your boat. You gain knowledge and confidence that makes you better in the water. Not only will you feel prepared for the boat ride, but you might also meet some like-minded friends!
Have a float plan.
Prepare a float plan – do not disappear! Always inform someone about your boating plans – the destination, route, and how long you will be gone. A float plan is a formal/informal note that includes your name, address, phone number, boat type, description, and registration; detailed itinerary; list of communication and signal equipment onboard and any other information to help identify your whereabouts.
Get a free vessel safety check
You can use the online safety checklist provided by the U.S. Coast Guard to make sure that you are safe and ready to boat. But, if you need to remember something or need more confidence, you can schedule a free vessel inspection by a USCG Auxiliary official. They assist in thoroughly examining your boat, reviewing safety equipment, and answering any safety questions you have. The best part — there are no consequences if your boat does not pass the inspection. Fix the issues and try again!
Check the weather forecast.
To plan a smooth trip researching the weather is essential. Even if your boat is equipped to handle rough conditions, you and your passengers probably want to avoid a bumpy ride and should be prepared for anything unplanned. Always check the route, destination weather, and water conditions before departure and ensure it is safe to go out. Prepare for lots of sun – carry good sunscreen and loads of water. Don’t let the heat and dehydration push you back home before you are done having fun.
Take to speed respectfully.
Nothing beats the feeling of gliding over water while experiencing a fresh cool breeze on your face. But before you speed, it’s essential to ensure that you and your companions are ready and safe. Ensure everyone is holding on and aware of what’s going to happen. Beware of swimmers and divers. Steer clear of other boats – maintain a suitable distance to avoid unwanted and dangerous clashes.
Remember to wear a life jacket.
Properly fitted jackets that can be put on quickly are a must before entering the water. It would be best to have life jackets readily accessible for everyone on a boat. Children must always have one on, which is also recommended for adults. A shocking fact: according to the Coast Guard reports – over 84% of drowning victims don’t wear a lifejacket.
Go easy on the booze.
When you’re having a good, fun day on your boat, it’s easy to get caught up in the excitement. But try to limit the alcohol, and if you’re in charge, save the drinks for later. The Coast Guard reports that nearly half of all boating accidents involve alcohol.
Conduct a pre-trip safety check.
A prompt and simple pre-trip inspection can prevent problems while you’re on the water. So, check for any damage or malfunctions before you leave for the water. Follow these steps:
- Perform a thorough examination of the boat and engine.
- Completely inflate your boat to make sure it carries air.
- Ensure the electrical parts are in acceptable working condition.
Always stay calm
The thing about adventure is that it always has something unexpected in store for you. So, whenever things don’t go according to plan, the key is to stay calm and composed to deal with the situation ahead of you. Only then will you be able to gather your thoughts and work in the right direction.
Protecting your loved ones and yourself is a priority. So, compromise isn’t an option when it comes to safety. Keeping these best practices in mind will make for an enjoyable boating experience. Go have fun – fishing, hunting, camping – but, as we always say – it’s safety first, leisure, and fun second!
Our premium inflatable boats continually prove to be the safest boats ready for any boating adventure in any weather. Professionals have shown trust in our boats for many years because of their unique capabilities and valuable accessories. We’re proud to make only the highest-quality, most durable, and safest boats.
If you’re ready to make some priceless memories – visit our website. We have a boat for all your requirements. To find out more about Stryker Boats, don’t hesitate to reach out and contact us online. However, you can also email us at [email protected] or reach out to us on social media.