Boating is one of the most favorite American summer pastimes. And even though travelling on a boat is a lot safer as compared to riding a motorcycle and driving a car, it is important that you are aware of a few safe boating pointers. Keep in mind that as the boat operator you are responsible for the safety of your passengers and of course your boat. So, how can you practice safe boating? Well, let’s take a look at a few tips to find out how:
Wear a Lifejacket
Let’s face it: how many people have you seen travelling on boats, who do not wear a lifejacket? Probably too many, right? Please note that this is not safe at all. As a boat operator, you need to make sure you and all your passengers are wearing a lifejacket. Now, why is that? Well, just like any ordinary person, even a boat operator needs to abide by the famous law “Safety First”. And, this is why it becomes imperative to wear a lifejacket. Not to mention, not wearing a lifejacket is against the law. Most states will require you have enough lifejackets on board for the amount of passengers.
Apart from lifejackets, the Coast Guard requirements state all vessels must have a minimum amount of safety equipment, but of course depending on the size of your boat. So, what are these safety equipments? Well, these equipments are basically common items which every boat has such as float lines, manual pumping, fire extinguishers, sound signaling device, and navigation lights. Flares should be stored in a dry area and replaced annually. Last, but not the least, maintain a usable anchor with a reliable line and carry a good horn or whistle onboard.
Check the Weather
Before heading out to the open waters, make sure you take a look at the weather forecast. Keep in mind for any changes which are forecasted later in the day and make sure that you reach your destination on time, to avoid any or all bad weather problems. Also, be aware of tide changes when travelling on your boat. As long as you know what you are doing and where you are going, quick weather change can never cause any damage to your boat or raise any potential risks for you and your passengers.
You might be confused that are there really rules for travelling on your boat? Why, yes of course there are! If you aren’t aware of these rules, it is imperative that you take a boating course, so that you can avoid any and all problems. These boating rules are actually pretty simple, like ‘Pass an Oncoming Vessel on the Left’ and ‘Overtake on the right side of a boat’.
Ah, of course, one of the most important safe boating tips of all. Never, exceed the capacity limit of your boat. Make sure you do not overload your boat with extra passengers or equipment. If you are looking for a way to keep all your things safe, it is advised to purchase and keep a Dock Box on board. This way, you can keep all your items safe and can even avoid exceeding the weight limit of your boat.
So, now that you are familiar with these five tips mentioned above, keeping safe while travelling on boat won’t be a problem.