Holiday weekends makes many people to come out and about on the water celebrating and enjoying time with friends and family.
Knowing how to stay safe and protect your loved ones while on the water is key.
- Know the Weather: Know the weather forecast before heading out on the water.
- Wear a Life Jacket: Nearly 85% of boating drowning victims were not wearing a life jacket.
- Plan on a Safe Location: If you’re caught in a storm while boating, have a safe location to go.
Before leaving for the lake or river, have a life jacket! Not only is having a life jacket for every person on the vessel required by the U.S. Coast Guard, but it can help save a life.
Tips on essential things to carry in the Vessel:
- Fire extinguishers.
- NOAA Weather Radio.
- Multiple communications options should your cell phone go out.
The forecast not only includes sky cover, temperatures, rain chances, but also includes the marine forecast.
Typically in a marine forecast, one can expect wind speed and directions, wave heights, roughness near the shore, and any significant weather that may impact the water. Most of the time, the marine forecasts stick to the coastal areas, but sometimes they can be for inland boating areas.
If you are caught on the water and cannot get back to shore in time, here are a few things that you could do to protect yourself:
- If diving, get out of the water and get to safety. If not possible, dive as deep as possible for as long as possible (or until the storm passes).
- Stop all activities if lightning occurs.
- Stay in the cabin of your boat (if it has one).
- Keep arms and legs out of the water.
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