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Boat Insurance

Summer Boat Safety Tips

Memorial Day Weekend marks the start of the boating season! With the summer ahead, it’s time to get on the water and enjoy those fun-filled boat days. There are than 11 million recreational vessels in the US, so it is important to exercise good safety protocol. Educate yourself, and others on your boat, on good safety practices to help mitigate risks while on the water.

Life Jackets

Life jackets are boating essentials. According to the US Coast Guard, in 2017, 76% of boating deaths were caused by drowning and 84% of the victims were not wearing life jackets. While regulations regarding life jackets vary depending on your state, wearing a life jacket whenever you are aboard a vessel is recommended. It’s also a good idea to make sure that your life jacket fits well:

  • Check the size and weight recommendations
  • Make sure that the life jacket is properly fastened
  • Check for any excess room above the openings of the life jacket and make sure the jacket doesn’t ride up over your face.

You should also ensure that there are enough life jackets for everyone on your boat.

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Take a Safety Course

Taking a certified boating course is recommended if you will be on the water this summer. It’s a great way to gain knowledge regarding laws and safety. Knowing the rules of the road can help prevent accidents from occurring while out on your boat. 

Prepare Before Heading Out

Before launching your boat, make sure that you are prepared for events that could occur on the water. Some things you should check include:

  • Life Jackets
  • First Aid Kit
  • Proper attire and a change of clothes
  • Sharing your whereabouts with someone you trust
  • What your emergency plan is
  • Emergency lights
  • Fuel Levels
  • The navigation system is working

Before your first trip on the water, you should take your boat through a de-winterization to prepare for the season ahead.

Alcohol

Never drink while driving, and that includes operating a boat. In most states, it is illegal to operate a boat when your BAC is over 0.08%. Alcohol impairs judgment and reaction times, which could result in a dangerous situation. Instead of drinking while onboard, opt to drink once ashore and in a safe and responsible manner. Alcohol could jeopardize the safety of those on board and others on the water.

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Boat Insurance

Just like your car, it’s important to have boat insurance. This type of insurance coverage can help protect you financially in the event of an accident. Coverage can include:

  • Medical payments coverage
  • Liability coverage
  • Property coverage
  • Repair costs
  • Emergency services
  • Uninsured watercraft coverage
  • And more

Check out our guide to boat insurance coverage here!

If you have any questions about insurance for your boat, call an Encharter agent. We are here to help you protect your boat and others on the water! Make sure you are prepared to go out on the water this boating season!

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