Having knowledge of boat safety is important in our area. It is getting warmer, and as it gets warmer, more people want to start enjoying the Bay and the Gulf. This past Saturday, Northwest Florida Daily News reports that boaters and paddleboarders went to Rocky Bayou on Saturday to support a cause close to their hearts: water safety. There also were canoes, kayaks and other vessels.
Tips for boating safety
No matter how many years you’ve been around boats, please read this safety information. People who hunt or fish from boats have one of the highest boat fatality rates. More die from falling off boats 16 feet and smaller than larger boats, and most boats are anchored at the time.
- Be weather wise
- Bring first-aid supplies and all the required safety equipment & clothing required by law
- Tell someone where you’re going, who is with you, and how long you’ll be gone. Fill out a float plan. .
- If you’re going to cross the ocean or a large body of water, consider survival equipment and supplies.
- If you’re traveling alone a marine towing membership can help in case of a breakdown
- When changing seats, stay low and near the center line of a small boat
- Be ready for trouble when a powerboat passes you in a narrow channel
- Anchor from the bow, not the stern
- Take a safe boating course.
Also, did you know that Florida law requires that persons born on or after January 1, 1988, complete a NASBLA-approved boater education course prior to operating a vessel powered by a motor of 10 horsepower or more? The law requires that persons affected by this legislation have on their person a Boating Safety Education I.D. Card issued by the Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission and a photographic I.D. while operating a vessel.
Make sure you have no one under 14 years of age to operate any personal watercraft on Florida waters at any time, even if such person has a Boating Safety Education ID Card. No one under the age of 18 years may rent/lease a personal watercraft. It is also illegal for the owner of a personal watercraft to knowingly allow a person under 14 years of age to operate one.
If you or a loved one have been injured due to a boating accident call attorneys Dennis and Paul Brannon at Brannon & Brannon. Be safe out there!