Boat Safety Tips For South Carolina Residents
Here in South Carolina, time spent on the water means fishing, sailing and boating. We want you to have happy memories everytime you go out, so we put together these boat safety tips.
We encourage you to read these tips and become familiar with the state regulations, especially if you are the boat owner and captain – you are responsible for the safety of guests aboard your vessel.
The South Carolina Department of Natural Resources is responsible for enforcing boat safety. Here are some of their tips to keep you safe while boating.
First, it’s a great idea to file a “float plan.” Much like how airplane pilots file a flight plan, you can file this float plan using the SCDNR form. It’s easy to fill out and you can send a copy to someone on shore.
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Next, always check the weather, including the marine forecast. Look at the weather forecast two days before your planned trip, the day before, the day of and when you arrive at the boat ramp or marina, to make sure it hasn’t changed for the worse.
More Boat Safety Tips
We know you always have your cell phone handy, but be sure to have a marine radio on board as well for a backup communication source. Handheld marine radios are very cost effective and easy to use.
Just as important, everyone on board your boat has to have a life jacket. It’s the law. You can provide personal floatation devices (PFD) that are stylish, easy to wear and are U.S. Coast Guard approved. However, if you are short on funds to purchase life jackets, did you know you take advantage of the BoatUS life jacket loan program? Just plug your location into the map application, and it will show you locations nearby where you can borrow life jackets at no cost.
Boating culture usually involves drinking alcohol, but we advise you to either go easy while underway, or better yet, waiting until you are safely back on dry land to enjoy a beer. The safety of your guests should always be first.
You should have a fire extinguisher (or two) on board your boat at all times, and they should be up to date. Always check the indicator on the fire bottle to make sure it has the proper amount of fire suppression chemicals.
Finally, we encourage you to learn and practice man overboard techniques. If one of your loved ones or guests falls overboard, it’s critical to get to them quickly and back on the boat safely. BoatUS has some good information to help you keep everyone safe.
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While we hope you never have a mishap while on the water, if you or your loved ones are injured on someone’s boat, let the Anastopoulo Law firm represent you to get compensation due to injury, medical bills or lost time at work. Call us at 1-800-777-777.