Featured image by Janos Bencs via Pixabay
Boating is a favorite pastime, perhaps especially for business owners, but boating has some inherent risks. If you’re not careful, a day out on a boat can be dangerous and even deadly. Here are the most common reasons for a boating accident, as well as how to avoid these catastrophes happening to you.
#1 Running Aground While Boating
Running aground occurs when there is no longer deep enough water to float a vessel. Grounding is both embarrassing and dangerous. Often after a grounding incident, there is evidence that someone had been inebriated or careless, or both. When boating, stay sober, slow down, and keep watch of your surroundings. If you do, you’re much more likely to keep afloat.
#2 Falling Overboard
A shift in wind or waves or drinking too much and stumbling can cause someone to fall off the side of the boat. An overboard tumble can be deadly if you knock yourself out on the way over. You don’t naturally float face up, so be sure to wear a life jacket that will turn you over. Also remember that if you’re boating alone and go overboard you’ll watch your beloved boat go off into the distance. To avoid literally losing your boat, wear an emergency cut-off-switch lanyard.
Boats have been sinking ever since there have been boats and boating. Boats can sink for several reasons, primarily due to damage or leaks. Holes, cracks, or breaches in a boat’s hull can allow water to enter, leading to its sinking. As well, exceeding a boat’s weight capacity can make it unstable and prone to sinking. Neglecting maintenance, including failing to replace deteriorating seals or pumps, can lead to sinking. It should also come to no surprise that severe weather conditions cause boats to capsize or take on excessive water, resulting in sinking.
RELATED ARTICLE: IGNITE CHANGE: HOW EFFECTIVE LEADERSHIP TRANSFORMS ORGANIZATIONS
#4 Catching Fire
How can something surrounded by water catch on fire? Boat fires are thankfully rare, thanks to spark-protected mechanical systems and double-clamped fuel lines. Still, it is not impossible. Be sure to look for obvious fuel spills or leaks. A rainbow-hued slick on bilge water is a sign of a major problem. In order to avoid a catastrophic fire when you’re boating, keep a fire extinguisher aboard, one that is rated for fuel or electrical fires.
RELATED ARTICLE: HOW TO AVOID GOING BROKE WHEN STARTING A BUSINESS
#5 Speeding at Night While Boating
Just like driving a car, driving a boat becomes more dangerous when the sun goes down. A significant cause of boating accidents is not matching speed to conditions or setting. You can’t always trust your own eyes to determine a clear path when it’s dark. In order to avoid an accident, either get back to the dock before dark or turn on your lights and go slowly until you’re back safely.
These are just a few common boating accidents, and nearly all of them can be avoided by following a few best practices. Proper maintenance, safe operation, staying sober, and adherence to local rules are essential to prevent boat accidents. If you follow a few pieces of safety advice, you won’t need to worry about your day out on the boat turning into disaster.
RELATED ARTICLE: 5 TIPS FOR ENTERTAINING CLIENTS: HOW TO WOW THEM