How to Pull Skiers Safely
To do your best to ensure that everyone has a fun safe boating adventure you need to learn the techniques for pulling water sports enthusiasts safely and make sure you have the correct boat insurance coverage in the event that there is an accident. As with any boating accidents, boaters who operate a vessel or watercraft while intoxicated by alcohol or narcotics or who exceed the capacity of a boat could not only endanger people around them but also void their boat insurance coverage.
Water sports are great fun, but they are also among the more dangerous activities on the water. Statistically, water skiers are in the top five most common boating accidents.
Here are some tips for keeping everyone safe and your boat insurance coverage intact:
- Know the laws of the state because some only permit boaters pull skiers, tubers or wake boarders during specific hours
- Stop the fun if the weather conditions turn bad and impact visibility
- Do not operate the boat if you have been drinking or using drugs
- Make sure you have a spotter – a responsible person (preferably an adult – and some states stipulate a minimum age requirement for the spotter) to watch the skier and relay hand signals to you as the driver of the boat
- Ensure that you, the spotter and the skier all know hand signals for ready, slow down, speed up, turn left, turn right, cut the motor, turn the boat and okay
- Make sure the skier knows that if he or she falls to hold up a ski to be more easily visible to you and other boaters
- Everyone on the boat and the skier should wear a personal flotation device (PFD) for safety
- Don’t take unnecessary risks; if the water is busy and congested, don’t ski there or wait until it is less congested
- Before you start to tow make sure the skier is ready, then start to slowly increase your speed – let the skier indicate with hand signals if you should go faster or slower
- If the skier falls immediately decelerate; this alerts other boaters that the person has fallen and lets you slowly turn and approach the fallen skier on the driver’s side without swamping
Water skiing, surfing and wake boarding can be a lot of fun when the towing boat operator is knowledgeable and doesn’t compromise the safety of the skier and others on the water.
Knowledge, skill and the right boat insurance coverage are the best combination on the water. Contact the boat insurance professionals at Global Marine Insurance for the best recreational boat insurance coverage.