With the spring boating season starting, it’s time to review your boat insurance coverage and safety preparations before you head out on the water.
Already, the United States Coast Guard has reported several incidents where they were called to rescue mariners who fell overboard. The USCG has also had to escort boating enthusiasts in the Pacific Northwest back to shore for not having life jackets on board.
We’re always here to help our clients and process boat insurance claims, but so many dire situations are avoidable. Before you go boating, think seriously about boating safety.
Here’s what the USCG would like you to remember:
- Lifejackets save lives when we wear them. Make sure that you have an adequate number of age- and size-appropriate personal flotation devices on board and they meet safety regulations. Put them on or keep them handy. They’re no help to you if they’re in storage and you’re overboard.
- Spring water can be cold, particularly if you’re heading out on the ocean. Dangerously cold temperatures can quickly cause hypothermia, so make sure you’ve got life-saving equipment like throw rings and flotation devices. And don’t forget a change of clothes and warm blankets in case you have to warm someone up.
- Always file a float plan with someone you trust so if something happens, and you’re not back when you should be, and a search can be initiated.
- Regularly check your safety supplies and restock them before you depart. You’ll want to have a first aid kit, flashlights (with spare batteries), flares, food and water, and a whistle. And don’t forget a VHF radio that is fully operational.
- Make sure your boat insurance coverage is up-to-date and provides you with adequate coverage for accident and personal liability. If you’re going out of state or over international lines, you should always confirm that you are still insured.
- Carry the registration for your vessel as well as any applicable boating licenses or identification with you every time you’re operating your boat.
It’s easier to enjoy your time on the water after you have prepared.
Ready to review your boat insurance coverage? Call the boat insurance professionals at Global Marine Insurance, and we’ll ensure you have the best options available for your recreational or commercial boat.