Water Wednesday Water Safety Tip – Boat Safety
All Smart Boaters know:
- Everyone wears their lifejackets.
- Boat sober.
- Drive with extreme caution and with proper lights after dark.
- Drive at a moderate speed.
- Know before you go – know the local hazards & the expected weather.
- Have the right gear? – Use a simple safety checklist!
- Tell someone your plans and when you expect to return.
Did you know:
- Children under 16 years of age are not permitted to operate a personal water craft.
- Children under 12 years of age must be accompanied by an adult to operate a boat with a motor of more than 30 kilowatts or 40 horsepower.
- Anyone born after 1983 must have a Pleasure Craft Operator Card to operate any size power boat.
- Anyone operating a powerboat under 4 meters in length, including personal water crafts, must have a PCO card.
Get carded! Obtain your Pleasure Craft Operator card by taking a Lifesaving Society BOAT Course or by studying at home using the BOAT Study Guide and take the test at one of our BOAT Test Centers.
Boat Safety is Crucial
Your boat checklist should include the following:
- Bailing bucket
- Oars or paddles
- Lifejackets or PFDs
- Throw rope
- First Aid Kit
- Tools/Spare parts
- Extra fuel
Get the right stuff! The length of your boat determines the quantity and type of safety equipment that is required on your pleasure craft.
ALWAYS inform someone of where you are going and when you expect to return.
Don’t overload your craft. Avoid swamping or capsizing by following the load restrictions of your craft. This includes the number of passengers and the weight of your gear.
Choose it and USE it! Trying to put on a lifejacket in an emergency is like trying to put on your seat belt during a car crash. Don’t just leave your lifejacket in the boat, wear it while enjoying the water!
ALWAYS Boat sober.
Boating and boozing don’t mix.
The greatest danger of boating is the one the driver can control – alcohol consumption. Alcohol affects balance, judgement, and reaction time. Piloting your boat while under the influence is not only dangerous but a criminal offence. Operating a boat comes with a hefty fine of $600.00 with a second conviction leading up to 14 days in prison. You can also lose your drivers license even as a first-time offender.
Most people who die in boating accidents fall out of boats or capsize and end up in the water. Falling unexpectedly into cold water can trigger cold water responses which cause uncontrollable gasping which can lead to inhaling water and drowning.
CLICK HERE to watch our video on Boat Safety!