Fun and Safety on the Water Go Hand-in-Hand

Posted in: Commercial Insurance

Boating season is in full force and whether you’re sailing or motor boating, PSA wants you to have a fun and safe time on the water. According to the United States Coast Guard Recreational Boating 2011 Statistics, the US Coast Guard counted 4,588 accidents that resulted in 758 deaths, 3,081 injuries and approximately $52 million of damage to property as a result of recreational boating accidents. To help ensure safety on your watercraft, we recommend taking the following precautions.

  • Boat safety courses are essential to protecting you and your passengers. Only 11 percent of deaths occurred on boats where the operator had received safety instruction. Click here for a list of Boat Safety Courses recommended by the US Coast Guard.
  • Ensure your vessel has life jackets for you and each passenger. Require children and weak swimmers to wear at all times. Seventy (70) percent of all fatal boating accident victims drowned and of those, 84 percent were not reported as wearing a life jacket.
    • Fifteen children under the age of 13 lost their lives while boating in 2011. Sixty (60) percent of the children who died in 2011 died from drowning.
  • Drink responsibility. Alcohol use is the leading contributing factor in fatal boating accidents; it was listed as the leading factor in 16 percent of the deaths.
  • Watch your speed and stay alert at all times. Excessive speed, improper lookout, operator inattention and operator inexperience rank as the top four out of five primary contributing factors in accidents.
  • Schedule regular maintenance and ensure your engine is working properly before embarking on your excursion. Machinery failure also ranks as one of the top five primary contributing factors in boating accidents.
  • Dress appropriately. Be conscientious of weather conditions and water temperatures. Hypothermia is the fourth leading cause of boating-related deaths.
  • Make sure your vessel has a carbon monoxide detector that is working properly. Carbon monoxide poisoning is the fifth leading cause of death.

Boating and enjoying the water are favorite ways to relax and have fun among the PSA team, but like all recreational activities, we always encourage practicing smart, safe habits.

If you own a boat or yacht and would like to speak to a PSA professional regarding your insurance or additional boat safety advice, please feel free to contact me at