May 16, 2018 @ 11:14
This Friday is the beginning of Safe Boating Awareness Week (May 19th-25th, 2018).
Safe Boating Awareness Week provides boaters key reminders as they prepare to embark on another boating season.
- Wear Your Lifejacket – Legally you must carry one on board, appropriately sized for each passenger. But don’t just carry it, WEAR IT.
- Boat Sober – Boating under the influence of alcohol, recreational drugs or prescription narcotics, is illegal, irresponsible and potentially deadly. Leave any such substances until you return to the dock.
- Take a Boating Course – The law now requires that anyone driving a motorized boat must have a pleasure-craft operator card. It’s for your own safety and that of your passengers. Don’t get caught without one. Take a course and get your license!
- Be Prepared – Ensure your boat has all the required safety gear and sufficient fuel. Be sure the weather is suitable for your vessel’s capabilities.
- Beware of Cold Water Risks – Cold water is a significant risk. Learn how to protect yourself.
The Coast Guard Ninth District will be supporting Wear Your Life Jacket to Work Day on Friday. Coast Guard members join boating professionals and outdoor enthusiasts to heighten awareness of different life jacket styles that are available and demonstrate their comfort and versatility by wearing them to work. The Ninth Coast Guard District is responsible for all Coast Guard operations throughout the five Great Lakes, the Saint Lawrence Seaway and parts of the surrounding states including 6,700 miles of shoreline and 1,500 miles of the international border with Canada.
U.S. Coast Guard statistics show that drowning was the reported cause of death in four out of every five recreational boating fatalities nationwide in 2016. In the Great Lakes, where lifejacket use was known, approximately 97% percent of those who drowned were not wearing life jackets versus the national average of 83%.
“Visiting the Great Lakes is a once in a lifetime experience; don’t let it be your last,” said Mike Baron, recreational boating safety specialist for the Ninth Coast Guard District. “Always wear your life jacket.”
The National Safe Boating Council is asking all participants to take a picture of themselves in their life jacket while at work and post it to the Ready, Set, Wear It Facebook page or submit it directly to the NSBC at [email protected]. Participants are also encouraged to tweet their picture using #RSWI2018.