Boating and jet skiing can be one of the most exciting summer activities that people enjoy. There are few things better than loading up the boat with food, friends, and family and cruising one of the nation’s many waterways on a hot summer day. However, as much fun as boating and jet skiing is, it is also an activity that carries the potential for danger. At Nekdoodle®, we appreciate good summer fun while doing our part to make sure that everyone is aware of some of the necessary steps to being safe while boating and jet skiing.
One of the biggest safety concerns with boating is wearing life-saving equipment. It is important to always wear a life jacket. Even if you don’t want to, and even if you think you’re safe on the boat, the unthinkable disaster can happen at any time, and you need to be prepared. To learn more about life jackets and the requirements of boating with life jackets, visit the Boating Safety Resource Center website.
Everyone knows that you never drink and drive, but the same rules also apply for boats and jet skis. It is tempting to want to go out with friends, and have a few drinks while enjoying your time on the boat, but the very same risks apply when boating or jet skiing as when driving. Alcohol impairs judgment and the ability to operate a motorized vehicle – and that means any vehicle. Read more about BUI (Boating Under the Influence) at the official website of the U.S. Coast Guard’s Boating Safety Division.
A common mistake when boating is the failure by the boaters to file a “float plan.” Much like a pilot who files a flight plan, a float plan is the planned route you want to take with your boat or jet ski. A float plan should be filed by anyone going out on the water for any reason, because in the event of an emergency you can have your emergency contact refer to the float plan instead of being forced to figure out the details. In the event that you might become stranded on the water, your float plan can tell the authorities exactly where to find you first, and those precious early moments are the most important.
Remember, you should also have your boating license. Kids, friends, and other unlicensed individuals might want to take a turn at the wheel, but this is the same as letting an unlicensed driver take the wheel of your car – you end up at fault if anything should happen. To find out about boating laws and license requirements in your state, visit the America’s Boating Course website.
We love fun, and we know that summer is all about fun, but boating and jet skiing also require responsibility and a commitment to safety. There have been far too many small boat and jet ski accidents that have needlessly injured others because people were unwilling to take some simple and necessary safety precautions in order to have good, yet safe, summer fun. Make sure that when you and your friends or family go out for a day of boating or jet skiing, you are safe. Have a happy summer from Nekdoodle®!