Do you love to sail? The peace and tranquility of being on a boat, miles from shore can be incredibly therapeutic, especially at a time when there seems to be no escape from stress and worry thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The last thing you want to have to face when boating is an emergency caused by a lack of safety, so it’s important to have a boat safety checklist before you set sail. But what should be included on this checklist?
Let’s take a look at 5 boating safety tips that will give you peace of mind as you head out this summer.
1. Bring Life Jackets
One of the best things about boating is the sense of independence and freedom it brings, so the idea of being told that you must bring a life jacket may not float with some people.
But even though life jackets were not commonly used even 40 years ago, it is now law that there must be a life jacket for each person onboard the boat. Contrary to popular belief, life jackets do far more than just keep a person afloat.
Most are made in such a way that they will turn an unconscious person face-up in the water, and many include signaling devices such as whistles and torches.
2. Bring a Safety Kit
The sea can be unpredictable, so it’s important to cover all bases when packing a safety kit. This should be kept on the boat at all times.
Some items may seem excessive, but it’s better to plan for the worst-case scenario rather than be left wanting because you didn’t think you’d need a certain item.
3. Know Local Laws
Boating regulations are put in place for your safety and may differ depending on what state you are in. It’s important that you know these regulations well and meet boat safety requirements, as there could be fines and even jail time if you violate the rules.
4. Maintain Your Boat
Your local U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary should offer a free safety check on your vessel which can put your mind at ease before setting out. But you should be regularly checking your boat to look for any potential damage.
Keeping the boat clean is also important as it can prevent corrosion and rust from building up. Using products like Better Boat both for exteriors and deck care can add to the life of your vessel.
5. Take a Boating Safety Course
A large number of boating accidents are down to human error, so it’s a worthwhile investment to take a safety course. There are free courses relevant to specific states available through the Boat US Foundation.
Go Boating With Peace of Mind
With the information in this article, you should be able to fully embrace and enjoy the boating experience, safe in the knowledge that you’ve taken all the necessary steps to ensure the safety of yourself and your crew.
Boating safety should be at the forefront of any plans you make before you head out on the water, so use the resources available to you. For more practical advice on lots of areas of life, check out the how-to section of the website.