Safety Tips for Oklahoma’s Boaters
Boating is a national pastime, but it can also be dangerous. In 2012, there were nearly 5,000 boating accidents on waterways across the county. These crashes resulted in more than 600 deaths and about 3,000 injuries. If you’re heading out on the water, following some basic safety protocols can help prevent a boating tragedy. Here are some essential U.S. Coast Guard safety tips:
- Take a boating safety course — More than 70 percent of boating accidents are due to operator error. Take a boating safety course before you get on the water to ensure you are operating the vessel as safely as possible.
- Wear a life jacket — Life jackets are essential safety devices. In fact, life jackets could have saved the lives of more than 80 percent of people who died in boating accidents last year. When you’re operating a sea vessel, make sure every passenger wears a life jacket at all times. If there is a crisis situation, there may not be enough time to access life jackets that are stored away.
- Make a float plan — A float plan is a detailed itinerary of your waterway trip. This includes your intended stops and your expected return time. Make a float plan before every voyage and leave it with someone you trust. This is important no matter the size of the vessel or the length of the trip.
- Never boat under the influence — Operating a boat while under the influence of drugs or alcohol seriously increases the risk of an accident. Protect yourself, your passengers and everyone else on the waterway by boating sober.
If a boating accident does occur, contact a skilled Tulsa boating accident attorney for help obtaining compensation for your injuries and property damage. Contact the experienced attorneys at The Barkett Law Firm to discuss your legal situation.