Recent Drownings Reinforce the Importance of Life Jackets
is Imperative While Boating
National Safe Boating Week, as proclaimed by Governor Roy
Cooper, is May 21 – 27 and officials with the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission say that safety should be a top priority
when recreating on water. The agency has responded to numerous boating incidents that resulted in drownings in the past few
weeks. These incidents may have been avoided if life jackets were worn.
“We cannot stress how important it is
for you to wear a personal floatation device, or PFD, while boating, whether it be recreating, swimming or fishing,”
said Capitan Branden Jones with the Wildlife Commission. “In 2021, 23 people lost their lives on North Carolina waters;
16 of them were not wearing a life vest. PFDs save lives, but they won’t work if you don’t wear them.”
New and novice boaters are urged to take the following precautions to ensure friends and family remain safe on the water:
Wear a life jacket or Coast Guard-approved personal flotation device (PFD) at all times. Put your life jacket on prior to
entering the boat and make sure its snug, yet comfortable, and will not move above the chin or ears when lifted at the shoulders.
Appoint a designated driver for the boat. Operating a boat under the influence of alcohol or drugs is illegal and is just
as dangerous as driving a car impaired.
Assign an adult “Water Watcher” to actively supervise children in
or around the water at all times. Young children and people who are not strong swimmers should always be kept within arm’s
Swim only in designated areas. You are less visible to boaters and more vulnerable to accidents. Avoid diving
in unfamiliar areas, as there may be hidden structures.
Throw, don’t go. Be prepared to throw a floatation device
or use a pole or tree branch to reach someone struggling in the water. Never jump in to save someone because you could go
Attend a boater safety course. The Wildlife Commission offers an array of boating education classes. If you
were born on or after January 1, 1988, you must complete an approved course before operating any vessel propelled by a motor
of 10 HP or greater.
Vessel owners should also be aware of a new fire extinguisher law relevant to disposable
fire extinguishers with a date of manufacture stamped on the bottle.
Youth of all Ages Rally
Saturday, June 4th
9am till 9pm
Youth speakers and singing
3 Heath Brothers
bring your chair
Riverbend 275 US Forest
Services Rd 1154 ~