Baltimore Boating Accident Lawyers: Safety Tips Before You Set Sail

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Whether you are a seasoned skipper or you are testing out your sea legs for the first time, there is nothing like enjoying the open water on a boat. From deep sea fishing out on the ocean, to waterskiing on a lake, to simply taking a ride and appreciating the view, a boat can provide a variety of fun-filled activities for the whole family. But before you set sail, there are some important safety tips you should always remember so that you and your passengers are safe.

  • Always check local weather reports prior to departure. If the forecast is not good, stay off the water. If you are already out and the winds pick up or the temperature drops, get back to land as soon as possible.
  • Create a Pre-Departure Checklist. This should include making sure there are enough lifejackets, batteries, tools you may need, extra food, etc.
  • Always use common sense. Maintain a safe speed, especially when there are a lot of boats out on the water, do not drink alcohol while operating a boat, avoid large vessels, and observe buoys, which are there to protect your safety.
  • Assign an assistant navigator. If the person operating the boat become injured or sick, it is important that there is another passenger qualified to get the boat back to shore.
  • Develop an itinerary. This will insure that friends and family on land will be able to locate you should something go wrong. Your itinerary should include where you plan on going and when you expect to return. In addition, you can provide more detailed information such as the name and phone numbers of all passengers and crew, the boat type and registration information, and the types of communication onboard the boat.
  • Review the proper use of lifejackets. Unfortunately, the majority of drowning victims are boaters who did not wear their lifejackets. Make sure there are enough lifejackets for every passenger and that they fit properly.
  • Do not drink alcohol. Just as you would avoid drinking and driving, you should not drink alcohol while operating a boat. You are twice as likely to be in a boating accident if you have been drinking than if you remain sober.
  • Learn to swim. All passengers should know how to swim. Lessons are available for all ages through organizations like the American Red Cross.
  • Register for a boating class. This is a good idea no matter how experienced you are. Brushing up on the boating safety rules of operation will help you stay prepared for anything that might come up.
  • Take advantage of free vessel safety checks. The United States Coast Guard offers free boat examinations, where they will examine the boat and provide tips and recommendations on how to maintain a safe vessel.

Kids On Board

Boating can be great fun for kids, and a wonderful way to spend time together as a family. Particularly with young children, it is crucial that each child knows how to swim and that they wear a lifejacket at all times. Reviewing basic rules of safety with your children should be the first thing you do before stepping onto a boat. Like any outdoor activity, watch for signs of too much sun, and be sure to use sunscreen with a high SPF. Also, prevent dehydration by having plenty of drinkable water onboard.

Baltimore Boating Accident Lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton Obtain Maximum Compensation for Victims of Boat Accidents

If you or a loved one has been injured in a boating accident, you may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Baltimore boating accident lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton will ensure that the negligent parties are held responsible for their careless behavior. For a free consultation, call us today at 800-547-4LAW (4529) or contact us online.

Our offices are located in Baltimore, Columbia, Glen Burnie, and Towson, allowing us to represent accident victims and their families throughout Maryland, including those in Anne Arundel County, Carroll County, Harford County, Howard County, Montgomery County, Maryland’s Western Counties, Southern Maryland, and the Eastern Shore, as well as the communities of Catonsville, Essex, Halethorpe, Middle River, Rosedale, Gwynn Oak, Brooklandville, Dundalk, Pikesville, Parkville, Nottingham, Windsor Mill, Lutherville, Timonium, Sparrows Point, Ridgewood, and Elkridge.