Please select your home edition
Edition
Naiad/Oracle Supplier

Eight Safety Tips for a safe boating season

by US Coast Guard/Sail-World Cruising on 20 May 2013
Sail safely in the coming season .. .
As winter is finally loosening its grip and the beginning of the 2013 boating season is slowly beginning, the US Coast Guard urges boaters and leisure sailors to make the most of the season by keeping it as safe as possible. Here's eight safety tips so you will survive and enjoy your boating/sailing season:

Safety Tip 1: Wear it!:
In 2012, almost 85 percent of 459 drowning death victims were not wearing life jackets. While there are many factors that can contribute to boating accidents, a properly fitting life jacket can save a life even after an accident has occurred.

Putting a life jacket on is much harder once you’re in the water — especially if you’re injured. Federal regulations require a life jacket onboard for each person on the boat, but the Coast Guard recommends that you wear your life jacket at all times when boating. There are state and federal regulations, that require children of a certain age to always wear life jackets when on the water.

If you do find yourself in trouble and in the water, stay with your vessel for as long as possible, even if capsized. Do not try to swim for shore.

Click this link for more information about safe boating: http://www.safeboatingcampaign.com/

Safety Tip 2: Be Alert!
In 2012, the number one accident factor was operator inattention, which contributed to 47 deaths and 359 injuries. If you are operating your vessel, please stay focused on that task alone.

Avoid ship channels when practical. When crossing cannot be avoided, proceed directly across and channel quickly

Be alert and watch for large commercial traffic

Be seen, especially at night. Ensure that your navigation lights are working properly before beginning your voyage

Know whistle signals – 5 or more blasts means danger

Listen to VHF-FM radio channels 13 and 16 for security calls from commercial vessels

Understand and observe the rules of the road

The Coast Guard encourages all boaters to participate in a boating safety class. Many boating safety courses are offered throughout the country for all types of recreational boaters of all ages. Qualified volunteer organizations, such as the Coast Guard Auxiliary, U.S. Power Squadrons and state boating agencies sponsor these courses.

Boaters can learn more about boating safety courses in their state by going to http://www.uscgboating.org/safety/boating_safety_courses_.aspx.

Additionally, you can find more information at the following links:

Transport Canada – Office of Boating Safety http://www.tc.gc.ca/eng/marinesafety/debs-obs-menu-1362.htm

Michigan Department of Natural Resources http://www.michigan.gov/dnr/0,4570,7-153-10365_10884---,00.html

Minnesota Department of Natural Resources http://www.dnr.state.mn.us/boating/index.html

Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/boat/

Safety Tip 3: So not operate your vessel under the influence:
In 2012, alcohol was a contributing factor in nearly 17 percent of recreational boating fatalities. The use of alcohol while boating contributed to 280 accidents, 227 injuries and 109 deaths. Though the number of accidents in which alcohol was a contributing factor ranked sixth, boat operation under the influence, caused the greatest number of fatalities.

Being under the influence of alcohol can be more hazardous on the water than on land. The marine environment – motion, vibration, engine noise, sun, wind and spray – accelerates impairment. These stressors cause fatigue that makes a boat operator's coordination, judgment and reaction time decline faster when using alcohol. Alcohol can also cause an inner ear disturbance that may make it impossible for a person who falls into the water to distinguish up from down.

The Coast Guard and state agencies have stringent penalties for violating BUI laws. Penalties can include large fines, suspension or revocation of boat operator privileges, and jail terms. The Coast Guard and the states cooperate fully in enforcement in order to remove impaired boat operators from the water.

Safety Tip 4: See something, say something:
A boater operating his or her boat while intoxicated is a danger to everyone. The Coast Guard, state and local law enforcement agencies rely on all boaters to help report dangerous conditions on the water.

In addition to helping us remove intoxicated boaters from the water, public reporting of suspicious activity, persons, or packages helps the Coast Guard keep American citizens and critical marine infrastructure safe.

Safety Tip 5: Emergency Communications:
Mariners are encouraged to invest in a VHF-FM radio as their primary means of distress calls on the water. Communication via VHF-FM radio is significantly more reliable than that of a mobile phone, especially in remote areas where mobile signal is intermittent.

Many new VHF-FM radios are equipped with Digital Selective Calling. This feature provides the mariner with an emergency function that will send a distress with the vessel’s information and Global Positioning System location at the press of a button. However, the DSC radio must be registered and must be interfaced with the GPS in order to accurately provide your information to responders.

Boaters and paddlers who operate in remote areas are also encouraged to purchase and carry a 406 MHz, Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon or Personal Locator Beacon. When a beacon signal is received, search and rescue personnel can retrieve information from a registration database. This includes the beacon owner's contact information, emergency contact information, and vessel/aircraft identifying characteristics. Having this information allows the Coast Guard, or other rescue personnel, to respond appropriately.

Safety Tip 6: Safety Equipment and free vessel safety checks:
Based on the size and type of your vessel, there may be specific federal requirements for carriage of safety equipment. Click on the following link to review the federal requirement brochure http://www.uscgboating.org/fedreqs/default.html.

The Coast Guard recommends that all recreational boaters (including personal watercraft users) take advantage of the free vessel safety check program every year. VSCs are offered by experienced members of the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary and the U.S. Power Squadrons, two of the nation’s premier volunteer boating safety organizations. A VSC is the best possible way to learn about potential violations of state and federal requirements. But more importantly, these quick exams can keep your boat and passengers out of harm’s way.

Click http://wow.uscgaux.info/content.php?unit=V-DEPT!here for more information or to contact a volunteer near you.

Safety Tip 7: Float Plan:
To ensure the safety of your vessel and all persons aboard, consider creating a float plan prior to your trip. Fill in all pertinent details and leave it with a reliable person that can be trusted to notify the Coast Guard in the event that you do not return or check in as planned.

For more information about float plans click here http://www.floatplancentral.org/download/USCGFloatPlan.pdf

Safety Tip 8: Create a safety legacy for your children:
Twenty-four children under the age of 13 lost their lives while boating in 2012 and 42 percent of those victims died from drowning. Of the 10 children that died from drowning, only 20 percent were wearing life jackets.

The Coast Guard encourages the boating public to educate their children on water safety. There are kid-friendly resources ready for the task!

Boating Safety Sidekicks
www.boatingsidekicks.com

Please have a safe and enjoyable 2013 boating season!

Related Articles

So, thou doth protest too much, me thinks
And no, we’re not off to analyse Hamlet right away. There’ll be no surtitles popping up on the top of your screen And no, we’re not off to analyse Hamlet right away. There’ll be no surtitles popping up on the top of your screen about now. At any rate, it is simply an adaptation of Lady Gertrude’s original line. We merely seek to use it as a way to demonstrate that when there is a lot of brouhaha going on, the smoke screen ultimately ends up as a lovely, colourful flag as to the real intent behind it.
Posted on 4 May
Shape of next Volvo Ocean Race revealed at Southern Spars - Part 1
Southern Spars has been confirmed as the supplier of spars for the 2017-18 Volvo Ocean Race. In mid-April, Race Director, Jack Lloyd and Stopover Manager Richard Mason outlined the changes expected for the 40,000nm Race during a tour of Southern Spars 10,000sq metre specialist spar construction facility. A total of up to seven boats is expected to enter, but time is running out for the construction of any new boats.
Posted on 3 May
Sailing in the Olympics beyond 2016 - A double Olympic medalist's view
Bruce Kendall takes a look at what he believes Sailing needs to do to survive beyond the 2016 Olympics. Gold and Bronze medalist and multiple world boardsailing/windsurfer champion, Bruce Kendall takes a look at what he believes Sailing needs to do to survive beyond the 2016 Olympics. A key driver is the signalled intention by the International Olympic Committee to select a basket of events that will be contested.
Posted on 29 Apr
From Olympic flag to Olympic Gold and maybe another
The Sydney Olympics was a Sailing double 470 Gold event for Australia. Having won the 420 World Championship in 2000, the feeder class to the 470, while still at school in Australia young Matt Belcher was given the honour of carrying the Olympic flag during the closing ceremony of the Sydney 2000 Olympics.
Posted on 28 Apr
Pantaenius – Smooth sailing is more than a favourable weather forecast
Pantaenius get ready to launch into their fourth year operating in Australia As Pantaenius get ready to launch into their fourth year operating in Australia, we get to see why they continue to grow their happy crew of customers. Sitting down with Pantaenius Australia’s MD, Jamie MacPhail, you immediately get a sense that the smooth sailing is a direct result of both their unique product and the marketplace’s willingness to embrace the better mousetrap
Posted on 27 Apr
100 days to Rio, are there potholes and bumps ahead?
The Road to Rio 2016 still has a few curves, bumps and potholes for teams battling to win in Hyeres. The Road to Rio 2016 still has a few curves, bumps and potholes for teams battling to win in Hyeres, at some World championship events and Weymouth World Cup but for most crews.
Posted on 26 Apr
Is George Lucas a sailor?
He’s very famous for a lot of things, and justifiably so. One of them is Industrial Light and Magic He’s very famous for a lot of things, and justifiably so. One of them is Industrial Light and Magic, which has been instrumental in the making of many of the special effects that have made the digital world so impressive. Gone are the smears of Vaseline along the bottom edge of the clear filter to hide the trolley that was actually transporting Luke Skywalker’s Speeder, for instance.
Posted on 25 Apr
America's Cup - Oracle Racing win in Court but with collateral damage
Oracle Racing have had another claim against them by a former crew member dismissed. Oracle Racing have had another claim against them by a former crew member dismissed. Mitchell focussed largely on the circumstances of the matter and introduced into the public arena some interesting documents to support his claims.
Posted on 23 Apr
Thou doth protest too much, me thinks
And no, we’re not off to analyse Hamlet right away. There’ll be no surtitles popping up on the top of your screen And no, we’re not off to analyse Hamlet right away. There’ll be no surtitles popping up on the top of your screen about now. At any rate, it is simply an adaptation of Lady Gertrude’s original line. We merely seek to use it as a way to demonstrate that when there is a lot of brouhaha going on, the smoke screen ultimately ends up as a lovely, colourful flag as to the real intent behind it.
Posted on 18 Apr
Children of the Internet, Rio and Hong Kong
I have four daughters, the youngest, who in her mid 20's is a true child of the Internet. I have four daughters, the youngest, who in her mid 20's is a true child of the Internet. The kind of conversations I have with her run along these lines.... In the olden days we did not have television until I left school and they had a thing called print magazines, that reported events between two weeks and four months after they happened. And her sceptical response... Hoh! Daddy, Hoh!
Posted on 14 Apr
Safety at Sea - Baltic - 1Barz Optics - San Juan Worlds Best EyewearT Clewring J-class