As the weather heats up, many people turn to boating as a fun recreational activity. However, it's important to remember that boating can quickly become dangerous if proper safety measures aren't taken. It is essential to be diligent in protecting yourself and your loved ones while out on the water. Before you head out on your next boating adventure, make sure you implement these tips to keep everyone safe.
1. Avoid Drinking Alcohol
It's important to remember the potential hazards of drinking alcohol while on a boat. Alcohol can impair your cognitive abilities, making it difficult to navigate or react to emergency situations. Even a small amount of alcohol can have a significant impact on your decision-making skills and reaction time.
Plus, the sun, heat, and motion of the boat can intensify the effects of alcohol, increasing the likelihood of accidents and putting everyone on board at risk. To ensure your safety and the safety of others, it's best to avoid alcohol altogether when on the water.
2. Wear a Life Jacket
When it comes to water activities such as boating, water skiing, or canoeing, wearing a life jacket is an absolute must. It can be a life-saving device in some situations. A life jacket is essential for anyone who may unexpectedly find themselves in the water, regardless of their swimming abilities. According to New York Law, youths under the age of 12 on boats 65 feet or less in length must wear life jackets that are U.S. Coast Guard Approved.
Life jackets provide buoyancy that can help keep you afloat even when you're tired, injured, or cold. However, simply wearing one isn't enough. It's important to properly secure your life jacket to ensure it provides maximum protection in case of an accident.
3. Supervise Children
When you're near any type of water, whether it's a lake, river, or ocean, it's important to keep a close eye on any children in your care. If you're in a boat, make sure they're wearing a life jacket. Even though you're watching them, be sure to avoid multitasking or becoming distracted by phones, interacting with other people, etc.
4. Take a Boating Safety Course
Taking a boating safety course can help you learn the essential skills needed to stay safe on board and prevent accidents from happening. By completing a boating safety course, you may even qualify for a reduced insurance rate, which can save you money in the long run.
The U.S. Coast Guard’s Boating Safety Division offers more information on the types of boating courses available. From boat handling to weather reading and much more. These courses have plenty of information that boaters can benefit from.
5. Avoid Speeding
Boating and driving may seem like two completely different activities, but they share important similarities. Just as you want to avoid speeding down the highway, it's also important to avoid high speeds when you're out on the water. By traveling too quickly, you risk approaching objects or land with too much force, potentially causing significant damage or injuries.
6. Avoid Overloading
Overloading your boat can be dangerous for both you and your passengers. To avoid this, it's essential to understand your boat's weight capacity and not exceed it. This information can typically be found on a capacity plate or in the owner's manual, and it's crucial to adhere to these guidelines to ensure your safety on the water. Being mindful of your boat's weight limit will not only keep you and your passengers safe but also prevent any damage to your vessel, allowing you to enjoy your time on the water worry-free.
Unfortunately, even if you follow all of these precautions, accidents can happen. A boating accident can be a frightening and traumatic experience, especially if you are not at fault. At Belushin Law Firm, P.C., our experienced boating accident attorneys understand the difficulties that can arise from such an incident. We are here to provide legal assistance and support, pursuing the compensation and justice you or your loved one deserves.
Our team is dedicated to representing your best interests and holding responsible parties accountable for their actions. Let us help you navigate the legal process and work towards a resolution that helps you move forward with your life.
Call us today at (888) 918-9890 or contact us online for a free consultation.