Staying safe on the water is everyone’s job. Tragedies such as this can be avoided. Below is a list of suggestions to stay safe out on the water:
- Attend a boating safety course.
- Always know the weather forecast before heading out. If there is any doubt about the weather, err on the side of caution and don’t leave the dock. If you notice the weather getting worse while out, then head in before it is too late.
- Invest in an Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon (EPIRB). This device aids rescuers should you get into trouble.
- Make sure you have all the necessary safety equipment. This includes items such as life vests, flares, a whistle, fire extinguisher, etc.
- Use common sense. This means operating your boat at a safe speed at all times, staying alert and avoiding obstacles such as other vessels or sandbars.
- Avoid alcohol. The probability of being involved in a boating accident doubles when alcohol is involved.
- Make sure all your equipment is in working order before heading out. This includes your engine, battery, radio, etc.
- Tell others where you plan on going before you head out and when you plan on returning.
Boating in South Florida is one of the most enjoyable things about living here. Staying safe on the water is the most integral part of keeping it fun for everyone.