Disclosure: The DFW Boat Expo provided my family with tickets to the event. No other compensation was received. All opinions are 100% my own.
Growing up in the South, we were literally surrounded by water. Residents are always seen boating or fishing in the lakes and bayous. (And when I say always, I mean always!) Boating is almost like a daily task, for some.
Being near large bodies of water brings concerns on safety. When I received these Summer Boating Safety Tips, I knew it would be great for my readers, regardless of the area they live in!
- Always wear a life jacket or personal flotation device (PFD). Most boating fatality victims were not wearing a PFD. Always carry PFDs in both adult and child sizes. Children younger than age 13 must wear a U.S. Coast Guard approved PFD while underway.
- Avoid alcohol. The probability of being killed in a boating accident doubles when alcohol is involved.
- Operating a boat under the influence is just as dangerous as driving a car when you’ve been drinking. Boating while intoxicated (BWI) is strictly enforced and carries penalties similar to driving, including possible Driver’s License suspension.
- Be especially careful on personal watercrafts (PWC). PWC operators and passengers must wear a U.S. Coast Guard approved PFD. Before borrowing or renting a PWC, take the time to learn how to operate the vessel and the rules of the waterway. Obey the 50-foot rule! Maintain a 50-foot distance from other PWCs, vessels, persons, shore, or stationary platform or other object unless operating at headway (idle) speed.
- Enroll in a boater education class. For class information, visit the Texas Parks and Wildlife
- Department Boater Education Web pages or call 800-792-1112.
- Don’t overload your boat.
- Operate at a safe speed. Use common sense, especially in crowded areas. A person must be able to bring the boat to a safe stop within the assured clear distance ahead.
- Always have a passenger serve as a lookout in addition to the operator.
- Watch out for low water areas or submerged objects.
These tips and more detailed information are available on TWPD’s web site at http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us/fishboat/boat/safety/safety_tips/.
Another opportunity to learn more about water safety is at the 2013 DFW Boat Expo. TWPD will have a booth at the expo, coming to Dallas Market Hall, 2200 Stemmons Freeway, Dallas, TX 75207, Thursday through Sunday, July 18-21, 2013.
Hours for the expo are:
Thursday, July 18, 3 – 9 PM
Friday, July 19, 3 – 9 PM
Saturday, July 20, 10 AM – 9 PM
Sunday, July 21, 10 AM – 6 PM
Tickets are $12 for adults, $6 for children, and are only available at the door. Parking is free.