Like so many of my blogs this will have little to do with insurance.
Yes we have lots of insurance companies that insure boats, and do it very well and inexpensively.
The thing is for your insurance to pay out anything, something wrong has to happen first.
Today was the first trip to the lake in 2010 for us. I grabbed two of my kids and a few of their friends.
While we had a great time as these pictures suggest, I spent time talking with everyone about boating safety, and how to drive a boat safely… even while pulling tubers that are seeking fast turns, and high speeds.
It starts with having a life jacket for everyone. Everyone should wear it, but anyone under 18 must wear one. Then we have to discuss fluids. Despite popular urban legend, boating and alcohol absolutely don’t mix. We had plenty of bottled water, and sodas. Yes even the early 20’s group with me drank water and sodas! If they wanted a thrill, all they had to do is hop on the tube, or wake board and I gave them a thrill!
As some were being pulled I let others drive. I explained that when boating there is no reason to ever have anyone get hurt or have an accident EVER!
You don’t follow other boats particularly if they are pulling a skier, or tuber. If someone follows you while you are pulling a skier or tuber, simply wave the yellow flag, and slow down, even stop if they don’t stop tailing you.
If you see another boat give them a wide right away. Who cares who get where first? After all it is suppose to be relaxing.
Be considerate of others. If they are stopped, or fishing, don’t go near them.. Stay way away. If you must go by them, go slow.
Assume every other boat driver is drunk, and stupid, or stupid and drunk. Its hard to tell which it is kind of the chicken and the egg question! But by assuming this, you take nothing for granted. You don’t assume the other boaters will do the right thing so you are safer, and you stay further away from drunken idiots than you would if you assume they are competent.
Teach younger boaters what you know. Even my 12 year old was driving; he has been driving every summer since I can remember. While you are pulling the tubers, or skiers, teach those sitting with you what you are doing. Talk about the things you are looking at and preparing for.
Report to authorities, rangers, and or police any drunken or unsafe behavior to get them off the water! We all have heard the stories of some jet skier landing in some ones boat, or other horror. This is why I say always assuming the other drivers aren’t right, and take appropriate action.
Who taught me how to boat? My father when I was 8 years old, and on. I also took a boating class in my early 20’s, and have boated my entire life without incident. Yes lucky, but also I follow these simple rules.
Always be safe, sober, and alert when pulling tubers, or skiers.