DBS when boating during safe boating week – or any time

Safe boating week was established to encourage boaters to practice safe boating habits. This week will be the 13th year that the USA Power Squadrons (USPS) have offered DBS training in preparation for their annual safe boating week.

Safe boating week is a time where the general public are encouraged to practice safer boating practices due to the recent surge in boat related accidents. While this doesn’t apply to everyone, the vast majority of boaters have completely disregarded these safety recommendations for years. So, why the sudden focus on safe boating now?

Many boaters have an amazing experience each year as they sail from one location to another along the coast, enjoying the sights and sounds of nature and the solitude of their boat. However, there are risks involved, and one of those is potential encounters with the U.S. Coast Guard.. Read more about national safe boating week 2020 and let us know what you think.According to the DBS, inflatable lifejackets are much more commonly worn by boaters. (Photo by Mike Schoonveld) word-image-5196 National Swimming Safety Week runs from 22 to 28 September. May.  This is just one of dozens of safety weeks sponsored by the National Safety Council – there are also safety days and safety months – I believe based on the dangers inherent in participating in various activities. Hiking only gets one day (April 7) and ladder safety only gets a whole month (March). Sailing should therefore be a relatively low-risk activity. That’s all well and good, but as most articles and news releases printed or broadcast at this time of year remind us during National Safe Boating Week, boating can be even safer. Most of these programs, videos or articles include a list of boating safety rules that, if followed, will make boating even safer. BoatUS, for example, published a short list a few weeks ago that boaters can use as a guide.

  1. Wear a life jacket.
  2. Use the SCAN technique when steering the boat. SCAN is a cumbersome acronym that stands for something like Attention! (Research-Focus-Analysing-Negotiating).

3.) Presence and use of a motor switch (for boats less than 26 feet in length). This device is listed because a new USCG rule requiring its use went into effect on April 1. I’m sure other organizations have longer lists. My list is much shorter. Do you want to remember the acronym?  DBS – that’s short for Don’t Boat Stupidly. I thought about calling it UCSWB, but it was too long – So use your common sense and use the DBS this year during Swim Safety Week and throughout the year.  Common sense (and the law) requires a life jacket for every person on board. The DBS says to put on your life jackets. Common sense says it’s easier to comply with the DBS rule if you use comfortable life jackets – and when it comes to comfort, nothing beats an inflatable life jacket. Most of the rules and guidelines for safe driving also apply to boats. DSB says not to drink and drive, not to text while driving, not to leave the driver’s seat unattended, etc. DBS and common sense say that if it sounds dangerous or stupid, it probably is. This means sailing in dangerous conditions or going too fast for the conditions, overloading a small boat, sitting on the running boards or bow, and more. If boaters and especially boat operators would pay attention to DBS, maybe sailing would not be a whole week, but just a special day.Although the summer season is a time for fun, there are times when boating is not the best idea. This is especially true during the safe boating week, when boaters are encouraged to avoid all activities that could result in a collision, and alcohol is banned. However, there are still times when it’s okay to do a little boating and if you do it correctly, you could avoid having to pay for a boat collision when someone else is at fault.. Read more about national safe boating week proclamation and let us know what you think.

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