Safety 101: 8 Boating Safety Tips and Tools

It’s National Safe Boating Week, and NOAA has partnered with the National Safe Boating Council, a NOAA Weather-Ready Nation Ambassador, to make it easy to remember what to do when you’re out in a sail or motor boat, canoe, kayak or other sea-worthy vessel this summer.

Here’s NOAA’s checklist for anyone going out to sea, lake or river:

  1. Will a storm move in while you’re on the water? Check the forecast and be in the know before you go. Use your NOAA Weather Radio to stay alert to weather hazards in the area
  2. Wear your life jacket. Always. Every passenger.
  3. Recreational boaters: Know what you’re getting into, literally. Check these nautical resources, such as the latest tide and current predictions.
  4. Understand the danger of cold water and how to prepare for and survive in it should you accidently go overboard.
  5. Know wildlife-viewing or fishing regulations, guidelines and tips for the location you’ll be enjoying. And boat responsibly while enjoying our nation’s pristine and protected underwater parks.
  6. Using a mooring buoy? Make sure you are using it correctly. 
  7. Boat clean and green. Secure all trash onboard, and don’t dump it overboard. Help prevent small oil spills if you have a vessel with an engine.
  8. “See A Spout, Watch Out.” It’s so exciting to encounter a whale when you’re out on the water. Know how far away you must stay from these beloved marine mammals for their and your safety. Boat strikes can kill whales and seriously injure passengers.