With Memorial Day quickly approaching, Kentuckians across the Commonwealth will be booking their last minute trips to one of the state’s most popular destinations – Lake Cumberland. From water-skiing and tubing to boating and jet-skiing, Lake Cumberland will be packed with people out on the water all summer long.
To make sure your time at the lake is both enjoyable and safe, the folks at DiscoverBoating.com recommend reviewing the 10 basic boating safety tips before leaving the dock:
- Be Weather-wise: Check local weather conditions on the television or radio before you set out. If dark clouds come rolling in, the winds pick up, or there is sudden drop in temperature, play it safe by getting off the water.
- Follow a Departure checklist: Use a departure checklist which covers everything from fueling up to fire safety regulations to make sure you’re prepared for anything on the water.
- Use Common Sense: It should probably go without saying, but you should always use common sense when you’re out on the water. Always operate your boat t safe speeds, steer clear of large vessels and other watercraft’s, and be respectful of buoys and other navigational aids.
- Designate an Assistant Skipper: Make sure there is another person on board the boat who is familiar with all aspects of the watercraft’s handling, operations, and other boating safety tips should the primary navigator become injured or incapacitated in any way.
- Develop a Float Plan: Always be sure to let someone else such as a family member or staff member at the marina know your float plan.
- Make Proper Use of Life-jackets: Assign and fit each passenger on your boat with a life-jacket prior to departure.
- Avoid Alcohol: The probability of being in a boating accident doubles when alcohol is involved so save the drinking until you’re back on land.
- Learn to swim: Proper boating safety means knowing how to swim so if you need to take lessons check with your local American Red Cross, YMCA, or swim club.
- Take a Boating Course: Whether you are a beginning boater or experienced skipper, it’s important to be familiar with boating safety rules of operation. Know your state requirements for operating a boat and consider taking a local community course or online tutorial to become better educated and better prepared for whatever may happen when you’re out on the water.
- Consider a Free Vessel Safety Check: Take advantage of a free Vessel Safety Check either in-person or online from the U.S. Guard.
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