High boating traffic is expected this July Fourth holiday as thousands of boaters will be out on the water enjoying the holiday with family and friends.
But with approximately 500 people drowning each year from recreational boating accidents, Wear It! reminds boaters about the importance of boating safety and voluntary, consistent use of life jackets.
“With more boaters enjoying time on the water during the holiday weekend, it’s very important to boat responsibly,” said Rachel Johnson, the executive director of the National Safe Boating Council, the lead organization of the Wear It! boating safety campaign. “Many factors contribute to staying safe while boating, such as always wearing a life jacket, boating sober, knowing navigational rules and having a proper lookout.”
New life jackets are much more comfortable, lightweight and stylish than the bulky orange ones most boaters know. There are innovative options, such as inflatable life jackets, allowing mobility and flexibility for activities such as boating, fishing, paddling or hunting, and they are much cooler in the warmer weather.
“We want people to have a great time boating while staying safe,” Johnson said. “There’s nothing more relaxing and fun than a day on the water with family and friends.”
Wear It! encourages boaters to take the Boating Safety Pledge. Sign and share the pledge on Facebook and Twitter at www.safeboatingcam
paign.com/camp-pledge.htm. Also, use hashtag #WearIt on Twitter and Instagram to share your boating-safety story and photos with the campaign.
The campaign is proud to support Operation Dry Water, which started Friday and concludes today, a nationwide boating under the influence education and enforcement initiative by the National Association of Boating Law Administrators in partnership with the U.S. Coast Guard. According to the U.S. Coast Guard, alcohol use is the leading known contributing factor in fatal boating accidents. Find out more at operationdrywater.org.
Wear It! unites the efforts of a wide variety of boating safety advocates, including the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators and Canadian Safe Boating Council, with the National Safe Boating Council. It is produced under a grant from the Sports Fish Restoration and Boating Trust Fund, administered by the U.S. Coast Guard.
Follow Wear It! on Twitter at @boatingcampaign, like on Facebook at facebook.com/safeboatcampaign, and share your boating story at safe