Summer Boating Safety Tips | MyY Collingwood | YMCA of Simcoe/Muskoka

Summer Boating Safety Tips from MyY Collingwood

July 28th, 2014 by wptest

Brush up on boating safety with these tips from MyY Collingwood.

By: Jesse Ramson, Pool Deck Supervisor, MyY Wasaga Beach

Summer is here and it comes with boating fun! While boating can provide hours of enjoyment, it also presents some serious dangers. So before you embark onto the rivers and lakes this summer in your boat, check out these Summer Boating Safety Tips from MyY Collingwood and the YMCA of Simcoe/Muskoka.

Always wear a lifejacket

Everyone on the boat must be wearing a lifejacket at ALL times! Lifejackets must be in good condition, so be sure to check yours before each boat trip. If emergency strikes, you won’t have time to inspect and strap on your lifejacket, so suit up and prepare ahead.

Ensure you have a proper fitting lifejacket that is certified by the Canada Coast Guard. Check the inside label for a Canada Coast Guard symbol and the suggested weight limit.

Don’t boat alone

Whether boating with a parent, or a friend, or a boating expert, you should always boat with a buddy for the sake of your safety. If you find yourself in a situation where you have no other choice but to boat alone, make sure your loved ones know where you’ll be going and when you plan to be back.

Follow proper boating procedures

Sit, don’t stand! Avoid jumping, rocking the boat from side to side and always remember to keep arms and legs inside the boat. You’ll still have fun, even while following these rules.

Pack a boating emergency kit

An emergency boating kit should include:

  • Bandaids
  • Gloves
  • A pocketmask or face shield
  • Gauze pads
  • Tape
  • Ice packs
  • Slings
  • Extra water and snacks
  • Flashlights
  • Extra lifejackets
  • Knife
  • Signal mirror
  • Compass
  • Paracord
  • Blanket
  • Whistle

Conduct a pre-season boat check

A pre-season boating check is a must. Check for items that might need repair or general maintenance. For an awesome pre-made checklist, check out this Spring Start-up Checklist.

Participate in a boating safety course

All operators of recreational powered watercraft in Canada are required to have a Pleasure Craft Operator Card, regardless of age, engine horsepower, or length of the boat. You can take the course and exam online, or visit select Bass Pro Shops from May to September to take the test. The initial cost is around $50, and re-tests are free!

Swim to Survive program at the YMCA of Simcoe/Muskoka

Aimed towards children but including all ages, the Swim to Survive program created by the Lifesaving Society of Ontario is an excellent preparatory course for the swimming skills required when boating. Rolling into deep water, treading water for one minute, and swimming 50 metres are the skills taught in the course designed to help in case of an unexpected fall into deep water. Enquire at your local YMCA for course availability.

Have fun!

Boating can be one summer’s greatest experiences. Be safe and prepared so you can enjoy your time on the water!

For more boating resources, check out these links:

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