As summer approaches, many people are looking forward to spending time on the water. Boating can be a fun and relaxing way to enjoy the season, but it's essential to prioritize safety to prevent accidents. At Carlson & Dumeer, LLC, we believe in promoting safe boating practices to help you have a fun and accident-free summer. In this blog, we'll discuss the top five boating accident prevention tips to keep you and your loved ones safe on the water.
1. Always Wear a Life Jacket
One of the most crucial safety measures you can take while boating is ensuring that everyone on board wears a life jacket. According to the U.S. Coast Guard, 86% of drowning victims in recreational boating accidents were not wearing life jackets. Make sure you have enough life jackets for everyone on board, and that they are the correct size and fit for each person.
2. Don't Drink and Boat
Operating a boat under the influence of alcohol or drugs is not only illegal but also extremely dangerous. Alcohol is a leading contributing factor in fatal boating accidents, according to the U.S. Coast Guard. Stay sober while boating to ensure the safety of everyone on board and other boaters on the water.
3. Take a Boating Safety Course
Completing a boating safety course can provide you with valuable knowledge and skills to help prevent accidents on the water. The U.S. Coast Guard recommends that all boaters take a safety course, regardless of experience level. Many states require boaters to complete a safety course before operating a boat, so check your local requirements and sign up for a class.
4. Check the Weather Before You Go
Unexpected changes in weather can create dangerous conditions on the water. Always check the weather forecast before heading out on your boat, and keep an eye on the sky while you're out. If you notice dark clouds, changing winds, or sudden drops in temperature, it's best to head back to shore and seek shelter.
5. Develop a Float Plan
A float plan is a document that outlines your boating trip, including information about your destination, route, and expected return time. Share this plan with a trusted friend or family member who is not going on the trip. In the event of an emergency, this person will have vital information to provide to search and rescue teams. The U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary provides a template for creating a float plan.
By following these boating accident prevention tips, you can help ensure a safe and enjoyable summer season on the water. However, if you or a loved one is involved in a boating accident, it's essential to seek legal advice from an experienced personal injury attorney. At Carlson & Dumeer, LLC, we are dedicated to helping our clients in Middletown, CT, navigate the legal process and pursue compensation for their injuries. Contact us today to schedule a consultation and learn more about how we can help you.