With summer upon us, Menifee State Farm agent Lisa Perez Houghtaling has some safety tips for smart boating and water activities. When the weather gets hot, throngs of people rush to the nearest body of water with their boats and wave runners for fun in the sun. It is important to remember to enjoy your recreational toys responsibly so that everyone stays safe, while having their fair share of fun.
According to the U.S. Coast Guard, 70 percent of all boating accidents are the result of operator error. With that in mind, here are some simple tips to keep you and everyone around you, safe.
Wear a life jacket. A life jacket should be available at all times for every single person aboard and should be properly stored for easy access. Keep in mind that each person should have a properly fitting life jacket before setting sail, for instance adult jackets will not work for children. Remember to test jackets once a year for wear and buoyancy and toss the ones that are waterlogged or leaky.
Know the rules. The nautical “rules of the road” are critical, especially when meeting, crossing or overtaking another boat. Maintaining a safe speed and keeping a watchful eye on the waters also helps to guarantee smooth sailing.
Be aware of carbon monoxide. All boat engines produce carbon monoxide, an odorless, colorless and poisonous gas. Poor cabin ventilation and faulty equipment can contribute to the problem, but carbon monoxide emissions can even affect you on your boat’s swim platform and other areas near the engine where gases could build up. Install carbon monoxide detectors on your boat and be aware of the early symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning, such as headaches, nausea, weakness and irritated eyes.
Get your boat inspected. If you’re not 100 percent sure your boat is water safe, register your boat for a Vessel Safety Check (VSC). A VSC is a free examination of your boat courtesy of the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary to verify the presence and condition of all required safety equipment.
Take a boating safety course. You can never be too prepared, so take a boating safety course. They are typically fairly quick, inexpensive and effective.
Drive safe. Designated driving doesn’t just apply to the roa. Be sure to have a designated sober driver for your boat as well. You can still get a ticket for boating under the influence. Help keep everyone safe and boat sober.
State Farm Insurance offers coverage for all of your summer fun including boats, wave runners, RVs, off road bikes, and any other big boy toys that might need some security. Contact your good neighbor agent, Lisa Perez Houghtaling for a quote.
29950 Haun Rd Ste 205
Menifee, Ca. 92586
Office 951-723-1900 Fax 951-723-1921
Monday-Thursday: 9am- 6pm
After Hours/Weekends: By Appointment