If you own a boat, taking it on an excursion could prove a great summer outing for your family. Your kids will love it, and everyone can have a relaxing day on the water. But, you are the parent. You must make sure your children stay safe. What are some of the regulations you must follow?
Generally, child safety risks are self-evident aboard pleasure boats. You’ll need to pay attention to many written and assumed rules to keep the children safe.
Safety from Start to Finish
Protecting your kids during boating starts before you even leave the dock.
- Make sure your boat is in good working order. Guarantee that is has received regular maintenance.
- Test all lifesaving devices on the vessel. These might include radios, horns, life preservers, fire extinguishers, smoke alarms, sprinklers, first aid kits or rafts. It’s generally not a good idea to boat without functioning safety equipment. In some cases, the law prohibits such actions.
- Every passenger should have a functioning life preserver, especially children. These vests should come in child sizes, and fit the kids appropriately. In some states, the police can cite boaters who do not provide life vests to children.
Once you leave the dock, remember that children are under your care. You must do what you can to protect them.
- Give the children a lesson in how to use life jackets and life preservers.
- Set ground rules. Establish where children can go alone on the boat, and when they must have an adult to guide them. Don’t hesitate to impose off-limits boundaries.
- Require everyone aboard to remain seated while the boat is moving. If there are seat belts, the children should wear them. In some cases, small children might even need safety seats.
- The kids should know how to use all leisure equipment like pontoons, skis and fishing rods. Think of it in simple terms. You don’t want someone to get poked with a fish hook. Therefore, make sure the kids know how to use the equipment safely. Don’t let them use any items not recommended for children.
- Supervise, then supervise some more, during swimming. If you let the kids get into the water, watch them closely, or accompany them. You must enforce all safety rules during these times.
While boat insurance might cover accidental injuries, it might do so for those resulting from crashes or operating mishaps. Ask your insurance agent at 818-706-8625 if your policy contains medical payments coverage. Then, see if an injury sustained by a child qualifies for a claim. It can’t hurt to ask. Nevertheless, do what you can to assure absolute safety in the first place.
Also Read: Owning and Operating a Boat in California