Essential Safety Equipment for a Boat Ride
Boats can be used for many purposes. It can be for fishing, skiing, diving, wakes surfing, and day cruising or overnighting. No matter what the purpose you must pack the necessary safety gear with you. Such equipment should be kept on board at all times with periodical inspection and making sure they all work well. So here is some basic safety equipment that will keep you safe during your boat adventure.
There are different types of fire extinguishers. You have to choose one according to the size of your boat. Boats under 26 feet need at least one B-1 extinguisher and boats of 26 feet and under 40 feet need two B-1 extinguishers on board.
Life Jackets and Wearable Personal Floatation Devices (PFDs)
A wearable PFD or a life jacket must be available to each person on-board. Whether you are riding a personal watercraft or towing a skier or have a wake surfer behind the yacht, a life jacket is a must to wear. If you are taking your children with you, make sure to get kids life jackets to prevent them from slipping through ill-fitted life jackets. In case of an emergency, the first and foremost thing you should do is to ensure that everyone on board is wearing a life jacket. It is better that your pet also has a life jacket on board too.
Throw able Floatation Devices
Apart from life jackets, you should also have floating devices to throw to a person in the water in case of an emergency. Having several of these won’t be too much. Some floating devices come with a rope attached so that you can pull a person and get them on board.
Sound Signaling Devices
Sound signaling is very effective and essential when there is fog, heavy rain, or at times when the boat operator wants to indicate his location. These can be portable or fixed horns and whistles. Larger vessels that are over 39 feet normally carry a bell to sound at regular intervals at times of limited visibility. A sound signaling gadget can be a whistle, a compressed gas horn, or an electric horn.
Visual Signalling Devices
Visual signaling devices or visual distress signals (VDS) are used to help others locate your boat as soon as possible in case of an emergency. These signals include day signals, night signals, and anytime signals. Visual distress signals are of two types such as pyrotechnic in which smoke and flame are used and non-pyrotechnic which is non-combustible.
Boats under 16 feet should have flares or nighttime signals while visual signals must be carried by boats over 16 feet for both day and night use.
All the above safety equipment is designed and manufactured for the purpose of ensuring the safety of the passengers as well as the vessel. Ignoring safety measures can lead to severe damage. Therefore, make sure that everyone on-board and the boat itself is equipped with the necessary safety equipment to fully enjoy the boat ride.