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Boating Accidents – Common Causes

One thing we become familiar with in the boat insurance industry is statistics.

Ski Boat - NautiqueThere are known factors that increase your risk of a boating accident (and consequently needing to make a boat insurance claim).

If we were going to do a Family Feud inspired game listing the most common causes of boating accidents in the United States, here’s what our survey would show on the board:

● Careless boating – Far too many accidents happen when people are not paying attention. You could also be charged with negligence if you’re caught taking risks out on the waves.

● Inexperience – To safely enjoy boating you need education, experience, and training. If you are new to boating, you can take courses to ensure that you have the right training to handle different situations and comply with boating regulations. As a bonus, any certification or boating classes you take could also reduce your boat insurance rates.

● Intoxication – Despite years of campaigns to raise awareness about the risks of drunk driving, too many people get into trouble boating under the influence. If you’re going to enjoy alcoholic beverages, dock your boat. Don’t risk hurting yourself or anyone else if you’re inebriated and remember you can be charged if you operate a marine vessel while intoxicated.

● Poor planning – Check the weather before you head out and keep an eye on the horizon and weather reports, so you’re not caught in a storm. Make sure that your boat is operating well (don’t risk equipment failures), has sufficient fuel, and that you have food, water, and first aid supplies. Filing a float plan could save your life, so make time to prepare for trips out on your boat.

● Boating and texting – The same way many vehicle accidents are caused by drivers texting instead of watching the road, distracted boating is also becoming more and more of a problem. If you are in charge of a marine vessel, don’t text or go online. You need to pay attention for safety reasons. And, hey, find the joy in being present in the moment. You can be on your phone later when you’re back on land.

Ready for to go boating? Contact the boat insurance professionals at Global Marine Insurance to review your policies before you head out on the water this summer.

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