Boater safety tips for July 4th


Story by Nevada Division of Wildlife

With the Fourth of July holiday coming tomorrow, the Nevada Department of Wildlife wants to remind boaters that many serious boating accidents happen during these very heavy boating days in and around Nevada waters. Game wardens from NDOW have noted a few important reminders for the upcoming boating weekend that will help boaters have a fun, safe and enjoyable holiday.

Swimming from a Boat Requires Planning

Many boaters love stopping in the middle of a waterway to take a swim, but there are dangers to leaving a boat, even if you do it voluntarily. Would be swimmers can help stay safe by following a few simple precautions.

  1. Leave someone responsible aboard the boat who can operate it in case of emergency
  2. Every swimmer should wear a life jacket and stay with a buddy while swimming
  3. Refrain from jumping from a boat during heavy winds

With just a few safety precautions, boaters can enjoy a day of swimming and boating and avoid any danger.

Watch Extreme Heat

The heat all over Nevada is breaking records. Boaters should pack plenty of water and make sure to limit sun and heat exposure. It is very easy to become dehydrated aboard a boat without even knowing it, so boaters should take it easy, especially in the heat of the afternoon.

Boaters should also refrain from drinking aboard a boat in the heavy heat. Alcohol, plus heat equal dehydration. Take sensible precautions and respect the weather conditions.

Take Special Care on the Truckee and Colorado Rivers

Many people in Nevada head to a river to beat the record heat. NDOW reminds boaters that moving water poses more danger than the still water of a swimming pool. River swimmers should always wear a life jacket and avoid places they don’t know.

In addition, any person using a boat, even a “cheap rubber raft” is required by state law to carry a life jacket on that boat. Even very inexpensive inflatable boats still must meet basic safety standards.

A Final Note

Boating is fun, but there are three steps every boater can take to also make it safe:

  1. Take a boating education course
  2. Always wear a life jacket
  3. Boat sober

Follow NDOW Boating on Facebook to stay up to date on changing conditions, tips to stay safe and to see some fun pictures and links about boating in the great desert state of Nevada.

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