When you go out on the water, it's important to keep everyone safe. This includes children who may not yet be aware of common sense ways to stay safe on the water. Here's what you need to do to make sure your children stay safe.
Make Them Wear Life Jackets
Make sure your children are wearing life jackets. This should include everyone who boards your boat. If you do not have them, you can purchase some at a local sporting goods store. Even if you think you can swim, having a child wear a life jacket could save their lives.
Have children put their life jackets on before getting into the boat and make sure that the back strap goes around both legs and under their arms. This makes sure that the life jacket will always be in the right position if they suddenly fall in the water.
Teach Your Children Not to Jump Off the Boat
Teach your children to never jump off the boat unless you say it's OK. Jumping off of a boat is very tempting for children who may see the water like a giant pool.
You don't want your children jumping near the engine, in water that's too shallow, in front of another boat, or where there are other hazards. Make sure they understand how dangerous it is to jump in unless you've stopped somewhere where it's OK to swim.
Always Supervise Your Children
Always make sure someone is keeping an eye on your children, whether they are in the boat or on the water. You don't want them getting into trouble, and you don't want them falling out of the boat without you realizing it. Children are light, so small bumps can send them flying if you aren't careful.
Be extra cautious around things like shipwrecks or reefs. Children will want to play on them, but there could be dangerous sea creatures around them. There is also a drowning possibility if they swim in and get trapped inside.
Make Sure Your Children Know How to Swim
Accidents like falling out of a boat or off of a raft are likely to happen. As soon as your children are old enough, make sure they know how to swim. This gives you time to rescue them if they fall in the water.
To learn more about boating safely with your children, sign up for a local boat safety training course today.