The Coast Guard urged all mariners to enjoy the Labor Day weekend and return home safely. This can be achieved by following a few safe boating rules:
- Wear a personal floatation device/life jacket at all times. The law states you must have a PFD for every person on board, but the Coast Guard suggests you go one step further and wear your PFD at all times when boating. It is much more difficult to locate, access, or don a PFD at the moment the accident occurs. Click here for information on personal floatation devices/PFDs.
- File a float plan and leave it with someone who is not recreating on the water. A float plan is a lifesaving device on paper and can assist emergency responders with locating a distressed mariner. Click here for information on float plans.
- Have a marine band radio and visual distress signals. All of these devices will greatly assist you if you are in distress. Click here for information on visual distress signals.
- Have a registered 406 MHz EPIRB. Click here to learn more about registering your EPIRB.
- Do not boat under the influence of alcohol. Alcohol affects judgment, vision, balance and coordination. Factor in boat motion, vibration, engine noise, sun, wind and spray and a drinker's impairment is accelerated. Click here for information on boating under the influence.
For additional boating safety tips, go to http://www.uscgboating.org/index.aspx.