Summit Insurance Advisors
by Michael Harbron on Sep 19, 2018
There is nothing more exciting than spending a lazy afternoon on the water. Whether you’re sailing with the wind or you’re flying through the waves on a speedboat, the feel of the wind in your face, the sun’s rays piercing through you and the cool spray of water on your skin can never be traded for anything else. Throw in a little fishing, swimming, or skiing and it adds up to an idyllic experience that can feel almost magical.
Still, regardless of how much experience you have as you prepare to step off land into that liquid world, it just makes good sense to be prepared. Sadly, boating safety seems to be the first thing neglected when planning an outing. Every year, hundreds are killed or injured in boating accidents that could have been prevented if they had just exercised a few precautions. If you’re thinking about heading out on the water, here are a few basic reminders about boating safety that can ensure that you will return home as happy, if not happier than when you left.
Always be Conscious of the Weather
Even though it may be bright and sunny where you are, things can change quickly when you’re on the water. Always make sure to check local weather conditions before setting out. Keep your eyes on the horizon. If you see clouds darkening in the distance, it could be a signal of more turbulent weather coming your way. It is better to play it safe and get off the water whenever possible.
Avoid Drinking Alcohol While on the Water
It would never cross the mind of most people to drink while driving, but many will do so without hesitation when on the water. Just like drinking and driving can result in serious consequences, the same is true for drinking and boating. In fact, statistics show that drinking while driving a boat is responsible for approximately one-third of all recreational boating accidents. Just as you would have a designated driver for when you are on the road, apply the same rules when operating a boat.
Have a Float Plan
Always let someone on land know where you are going and when you expect to return. Notifying someone to be on the lookout for you can ensure that if something does happen, they know where to find you and what to look for. Include all pertinent information so they can provide it to the Coast Guard or local authorities. Make sure your plan has:
Use a Life Jacket
The US Coast Guard estimates that more than 80% of lives lost in boating fatalities could have been prevented if they had worn a life jacket. Simply by wearing one while on the water rather than waiting for an event to happen can literally save lives.
It may seem that all the space you have on the open water means fewer accidents, but if you value your boat and the memories you create when you’re on it, the cost of boating insurance is worth every penny. Consider it an investment in the pleasures of life so that you can continue to enjoy all the wonderful thrills your boating life can offer you. For more information on our coverage and boating insurance services here at Summit Insurance AZ, contact us today.
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