Sunny skies and warmer temperatures are the universal signs for boat lovers everywhere to get out and enjoy the water. Recreational boating is a fun way to enjoy your family and friends, but not if you ignore safe boating tips. According to the U.S. Coast Guard, every two and a half hours someone is either injured or killed in an accident involving a boat. Take boating safety seriously to avoid becoming a statistic.
Here’s what you need to know to stay safe in and out of the water.
- Always wear a life jacket. The chances of drowning decrease dramatically when you wear one. One in 66 people in a boating accident drown if they aren’t wearing a life jacket. Don the jacket, and the chances drop to one in 11.
- Don’t drink and drive. Alcohol will affect your ability to safely navigate the boat.
- Keep safety equipment on board, including a fire extinguisher and boat lights.
- Don’t head out in bad weather. If inclement weather is heading your way, leave the water early.
- Always let someone know if you plan to go out on the water alone. In case something goes wrong, someone will know when you were planning to return.
- Don’t load the boat with too much weight, which can make it unstable or cause it to capsize.
- Protect valuables on board. Keep the key, registration and important papers locked away. If you leave your boat docked, store all valuables in a safe location.
- Properly insure the boat. Keep the highest level of insurance on the watercraft as possible to cover damage from an accident, vandalism, and weather-related damage.
For more information about these boating safety tips or to talk to an agent about insuring your watercraft, contact the reputable agents at Spreng-Smith Agency. We are happy to help our North Central Ohio neighbors with fire and flood, home and auto, and health insurance.
Tell us: What kind of boating insurance do you currently hold?