Boating Safety Tips Everyone Should Know

shutterstock_15657421Did you know that Rhode Island requires boaters to have a Boater Safety Education Certificate, not a boating license? Anyone born on or after January 1, 1986, is required to pass an approved boater education course before legally operating any vessel powered by a motor of more than 10 horsepower. In addition, anyone operating a personal watercraft, or jet ski, regardless of age, must have passed an approved boater education course.

In addition to reviewing your local boating laws, it’s important to always practice boating safety. We have provided some tips to help ensure you have a safe and enjoyable trip:

  • Be weather-wise. We are at the start of hurricane season, and you should always check local weather conditions before departure.
  • Download the U.S. Coast Guard’s (USCG) boating safety app. The USCG released a mobile app last month that features: latest safety regulations, ability to request emergency assistance, file a float plan, and more.
  • Develop a float plan. Always be sure to let someone else know your plan, including where you’re going and how long you’re going to be gone.
  • Have proper lifejackets onboard. The majority of drowning accidents result from boaters not wearing a lifejacket. Make sure everyone onboard has a lifejacket and that it properly fits.
  • Avoid alcohol. The probability of being involved in a boating accident doubles when alcohol is involved.
  • Consider a free vessel safety check. The USCG offers complimentary boat examinations to evaluate the safety of your vessel.

For more information on boating safety or to inquire about marine insurance, please call OceanPoint Insurance at 401.847.5200.