When you want to spend a great day on the water, it's necessary to know the basic safety rules. From being prepared in the event of an emergency with life jackets to checking the weather before you head out, keep yourself and your friends safe when you are out boating. Know what the water conditions are, and be ready to manage in the event of rain or if you need life jackets. When you are the driver, you are responsible for knowing boating etiquette. Your job is to pay attention and protect those you are driving around with on the open water.
Count Your Life Jackets
You should have one life jacket for every person who is riding on your boat. No matter how well everyone says they can swim or how shallow you believe the water to be, everyone who is on board your boat needs to have a life jacket accessible to them. In the event of an emergency, such as a crash that is bringing on water, everyone will have a life jacket in order to stay safe.
Watch the Weather
Check the weather before you plan a day on your boat. Check again before you head out onto the water. You'll want to continue to check the weather periodically so that you don't get stuck in the middle of the water during a thunderstorm. While you can't predict the weather 100%, it's always a safe bet to check it.
Be Prepared With the Right Gear
Before you head out onto the water, make sure you have plenty of supplies on board. You should have enough water for everyone to drink if it's a hot day. Flashlights, garbage bags, a whistle, a bucket, a first aid kit, and a fire extinguisher should all be included in the gear you have on board. Visit your local boat dealer if you need more equipment.
Know Your Boat's Capacity
Under no circumstances should you fill your boat over the capacity. Know how much weight your boat holds and how many passengers are safe to include. Do not go over this number, as you are risking everyone on board and your boat if you do so.
If you are a recreational boater, common sense will go a long way. Pay attention to your surroundings, and make sure everyone has the correct safety gear. Know what the weather is going to be, and look for signs that you need to head back because the weather is changing. You can have a great day on the water if you take some precautions.