Safety while fishing and boating is possibly the most important knowledge one can have when embarking on a boating adventure. Aside from abiding by the appropriate laws, there are always other precautions that must be taken any time you find yourself out on the water.
• Whether you believe you need one or not, all people on board the fishing vessel must always have on their life jackets or personal flotation vests. Before setting out, make sure that every vest is appropriately and correctly secured.
• In the instance that a stork hits, immediately seek out shelter. If you find yourself caught in the middle of a thunder and lightning storm, keep as low as possible while staying in the very middle of the boat.
• If you find that you have made it into a fog cloud, this is the time to sound your fog horn in order to warn other possible approaching boats of your presence.
• Aim the bow of your boat at the oncoming waves at an angle of 45 degrees and reduce your speed.
• Make sure that any passengers that are on the boat during a storm are seated as close to the center of the boat as possible on the floor of the vessel.
• If there are any items that are loose on the boat, immediately secure them while also making sure that you have easy access to any emergency gear.
• While it may be difficult, do whatever is possible in order to keep the bilge as free of water as possible. If the boats engine happens to stop, head to the bow for the anchor and drop it. If you are in a boat that is without any kind of anchor, turn to anything with weight such as fishing gear or a bucket. This will serve to create a drag which will keep the bow of the boat facing into the wind.
• In order to prevent any passengers from going overboard amongst all of the chaos, instruct them to stay away from the bow, gunwale, or any other object that is not specifically intended to be sat upon. Instruct passengers to refrain from standing or leaning out of the boat especially when the boat is traveling at any speed faster than idle. Passengers should also refrain from moving about the boat when it is in motion as well.
• In the instance that someone does fall overboard, immediately reduce the speed of the boat and throw the individual a floatation device. Turn around the boat slowly until you can pull up alongside them downwind. Now, stop the boat’s engine and carefully pull the passenger back on board at the stern. This will keep the weight of the boat balanced.
On days when you are unable to make it out to the water, try out some great online fishing games to keep yourself entertained and your skills sharp.