Safe summer boating
3 tips for boating safely this summer
Here are three tips for boaters that will improve your boating safety game all summer long:
- Select a life jacket you will actually wear. Consistently wearing a life jacket may be a challenge for some boaters, but it doesn’t have to be. Inflatable life jackets can be as unobtrusive as a small, lightweight belt pack worn around the waist or suspenders-style inflatable worn over the shoulders. They don’t trap body heat and give full mobility needed to cast a line or trim a mainsheet.
- Take a boating safety education course. Learning the rules of the road can be difficult for some boaters as they don’t always have the time to take a boating safety course. But all you need is a computer or tablet to take an online boating course. Learning can be paused and picked up again as your schedule permits.
- Simpler float plans may be better. For most boaters who boat on familiar home waters, a float plan can be as easy as a text message to a friend or relative about where you are going, who is aboard, and what time you expect to return. And don’t forget to close it out with a text message after you’ve returned. If you’re at a boat ramp, leaving the details of your trip on a piece of paper or float plan form and putting it in view on the dashboard of your tow vehicle is another simple way to do it. More detailed float plans are also great if you have a need for more coordination, such as for longer offshore passages.