Boating Safety 101: Keeping You & Your Family Safe While Out on the Water

It is boating season! So, before you head to the ocean, be sure to check out the boat safety that you should know about this boating season.

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Many Long Islanders will begin to enjoy the ocean with taking their boats out or renting boats for an ocean outing. Without a doubt, boating is very popular on Long Island, but there are a lot of safety messages that need to be taken before anyone ventures out into the water.

National Safe Boating Week is the week of May 25th and an official national safety awareness week. Along with being aware of safety while boating, The New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation has created a law that requires all new boaters to obtain boating safety certification as of May 1st. For anyone born on or after May 1st, 1996, they will be required to take an 8-hour course and legally required to have the certificate to operate a motorboat. It is encouraged that all people who operate a motorboat should take this course. The certificate will be reflected on one's New York License.

Luckily, many courses are being offered already. So be sure to check one of them out before you begin boating and gain your certificate:

Everyone should enjoy their boating experience and understanding the proper safety measures can prevent tragedy from occurring. In addition to the courses above, always keep the following safety tips in mind.

  • Life jackets should be available and used by all of those who are traveling on the boat.
  • Always be aware of the weather.
  • Never operate a boat under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • Do not overload your boat with too many people or things.
  • In New York State, your boat must be registered. Be sure you have properly registered your boat and display the registration sticker.
  • In New York State, fire extinguishers are required on all vessels.
  • Be sure to have visual distress equipment as to be able to identify if you need help. There are various flares available for purchase.
  • Be sure to follow all rules of the water, for additional information be sure to check out the New York States parks boating guide.

So, have fun and be safe this boating season!

Where do you like boating on Long Island? Do you have any great boating advice for new or seasoned boaters? Tell us in the comments below!