It’s Easy to Be Prepared for Safe Boating on the Water
Every morning the TotalBoatShow INBOX gets a google news alert tagging interesting news items that are “boating” related. It is both stunning and upsetting to read the daily news pieces that clog up the feed reporting on boating tragedies. Today feels especially tragic because Miami Marlins pitcher José Fernández, one of baseball’s brightest stars, was killed early yesterday morning in a boating accident off the Miami coast.
Apparently, Fernández was out with some friends off Miami boating for the evening. Based on impact evidence and the severity of damage, officials concluded the boat — a 32-foot SeaVee center console — hit the rocks of a jetty at full speed. A report like this shakes the center of any power boater who can fully appreciate the severity of a crash like this.
Which brings me back to the Google News feed. It is littered with reports of horrible, unthinkable boating tragedies. No country, population or vessel is safe from the dangers always present when on the water. And with the migrant situation adding significant “traffic” to the waterways and the tragic news feed, it is a depressing reminder that accidents happen often and every boater must be aware, prepared with the right kit and ready to use it. Granted, the migrant boats are often operating with the least safe practices and massive overcrowding, but closer to home, people go missing, drown, are injured or killed daily in boating related incidents.
Autumn is a great time to inspect your boat’s systems and look closely at your safety checklist. At a time when about half the country is hauling for the season, it’s a great time to focus on your own safety items and procedures. Inspection of USCG required items, all of your through-hulls, your first aid kit, and your fire suppression systems is a MUST-DO every season. A quick inspection at haul-out is a great time to find items needing your attention in the spring or before your launching checklist runneth over. Even if you don’t haul in the Fall, take the time to examine your own safety measures aboard now that you’ve been reminded.
Accidents happen fast and when you add water, lots can go wrong quickly. There is danger lurking in the lakes, rivers and with migrants, captains, sailors, kids and fishermen. No one is exempt – even the most experienced are at risk and stories of their disasters are easy to find. Act now to prevent incident and remember to boat safely, in control and inside of your comfort zone.