It's that time of the year when many people get out and enjoy the wonderful recreational opportunities that exist in New York state. Our many scenic lakes, rivers, roads and trails are being used now more than any other time of the year.
With the increase in traffic comes the risk for accidents that can destroy a vacation. Accidents are usually caused by lack of education and training, carelessness, or operating equipment while impaired by drugs and/or alcohol.
The United States Coast Guard reports that alcohol use was the leading contributing factor in boating fatalities last year. Remember the same laws for drunk driving on land apply to driving on the water.
Everyone who is going to operate a boat should take a Safe Boating Course. For NYS safe boating courses and youth certification contact the NYS Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation. The NYS Safe Boating Pledge follows.
I will assist those in need, and report any boating accident in which I'm involved.
I will have USCG approved life jackets, (in correct sizes and good condition) on board.
I will operate in a safe and careful manner, never recklessly, and never while impaired.
I will understand and follow the Rules of the Road.
I will take a boating safety course.
I will carry the proper equipment while underway.
I will understand and obey navigation aids.
I will understand and follow the legal requirements for operating a personal watercraft.
I will remember to follow the rules of safe boating, when pulling skiers or tubers, skin diving, fishing or hunting.
I will register my motorized boat with the Department of Motor Vehicles.
While enjoying your ride on land or water, remember to keep it fun and safe for you and everyone around you.
Dorean Page for the
HFM Prevention Council