You can’t wait to get the kids out on the boat this summer. They can’t wait either. It’s fun. It’s freeing. And you worked hard to have this opportunity.
Have you taken precautions to keep your children safe, though?
As they get older, you may have less to worry about, but as a parent, wanting to keep our kids safe never goes away. Out on the boat, no matter how old they are, is no different. Take a look at our tips for keeping your kids safe when you take them out on the boat this summer.
CHILDPROOF YOUR BOAT
If you’ve got young children, you’ll want to treat your boat like you do your house. Babyproof it. Stow breakables and dangerous items out of their reach. Gear like winches, windlasses, ropes, and boxes need to be out of the way. EPIRBS, flares, and flare guns cannot be locked away, but your children shouldn’t be able to get to them, either. Make the areas with ropes and halyards off-limits areas.
GET THE RIGHT LIFE VEST
Take your children shopping for an age-appropriate life vest. By bringing them with you, you can make sure it fits. A good life vest will have a collar that turns your children face up in the water. It was also have strong waist and crotch straps and a handle on the collar. Get one with a plastic whistle and spend time teaching your children, even if they’re toddlers, how to use it. Practice with them until they’re comfortable blowing into it.
CPR is a good skill to have as a parent no matter where you are. On the water, when there’s no help for miles, it can save a life. You’ll be able to respond to emergencies much quicker and save someone until you can get help. Make sure your kids take swim lessons or work closely with them to improve their swimming abilities. This isn’t a guarantee you won’t need to use your CPR skills but it does reduce the chances.
ESTABLISH RULES – AND ENFORCE THEM
All children need rules and boundaries but they’re even more important on a boat in the middle of the water. Here are a few to make and stick with – for everyone’s safety.
- Children under 13 need to wear a life vest.
- No running on the boat.
- Stay seated while the boat is moving
- Hands and feet on the boat at all times
HAVE SNACKS AND DRINKS
Nothing makes a trip more miserable or increases the likelihood of an accident then a cranky, hungry child who won’t listen. You know how they are in the grocery store at a certain hour of the day. It won’t be any different on the boat, and it could be more dangerous. Make sure to have plenty of snacks and water to drink.
Taking your kids out on the water is an experience they’ll never forget and will be some of the most special memories they have when they grow up. Make sure all they remember are good times by keeping them safe when you’re out on the water.
Another way to protect your family is make sure you have good boat insurance for your watercraft. Contact us at Charlotte Insurance today for a quote and to answer any questions you may have.