The East Algoma Ontario Provincial Police is reminding everyone to be aware of proper boating practices and to take steps to ensure a safe and happy boating season. Here are a few things to consider this boating season.
When you purchase a boat, you need to get a pleasure craft licence document with a unique licence number. It’s FREE. The number allows Search and Rescue personnel to access information in an emergency.
- Take a few minutes to make sure to boat safely before you leave. Complete a pre-departure check list and a sail plan and check the water and weathers conditions to ensure you are prepared.
- Every vessel must have a personal floatation device or lifejacket for everyone on board. Choosing the right life jacket or Personal Floatation Device (PFD) is very important for keeping you and your onboard guests safe.
- Check the load capacity of your boat. Take a second trip if necessary to avoid over loading your boat. Distribute the load evenly so that your vessel is not prone to tipping or taking on water.
- Operate your boat in a responsible fashion. Consider boat traffic and weather / water conditions. You must always be prepared and alert, since conditions on the water can change quickly. Show courtesy to other boaters.
- Everyone who operates a power-driven boat in Canada requires a Pleasure Craft Operator Card. You can find Pleasure Craft Licence applications on line.
- Boating and alcohol do not mix. Remember you are responsible for the safety of your guests and others using the waterway. Operating a boat while impaired is a criminal offence. It is an offence to have open liquor in your vessel unless it is moored, has a washroom, cooking and sleeping facilities.
“Remember no matter what life saving device you choose it won’t work if you don’t wear it.” states A/S/Sgt Marty Van Kessel of the East Algoma Detachment.
For more information go to: Transport Canada website at: www.tc.gc.ca/eng/marinesafety/menu.htm.