The Canada Day long weekend means that many more families and friends will look to spending their time boating. Unfortunately, this is also means popular boating areas will be much busier and there will be an increase in the number of boaters who have been drinking.
The number of boating fatalities reported this year are double what they were last year. There have been 11 boating-related fatalities reported this year; only five were reported around this same time last year.
Of the boating deaths in Ontario, nine of the victims were not wearing life jackets and alcohol was a factor in at least three cases.
In order to prepare for the busy weekend and holiday ahead, Greg Monforton & Partners are offering the following boating tips.
- Never drive a boat without a proper license. If you are a passenger on a boat, make sure the driver has a Pleasure Craft Operator Card.
- Always wear a life jacket. Children should always be equipped with life jackets that fit properly.
- Boat passengers should be cautious about drinking excessively and drivers should avoid consuming alcohol.
- Be weather wise. Check local weather conditions before you depart and if you notice bad weather coming your way play it safe and get out of the water.
- Develop an emergency plan and make sure you and your passengers discuss what to do if a dangerous situation arises.
According to BOATSmart!, about 77 per cent of boaters do not have proper licenses. Anyone who is driving a motor boat without a license is subject to a $250 fine. Additionally, about 79 per cent of boaters who drowned between 1996 and 2919 were not wearing life jackets. Even if you believe that you are a great swimmer, it is better to be safe while on the open water.
Boating is a great way to enjoy the holiday weekend, just be sure to practice safe boating habits.
If you or someone you know is injured in a boating accident, contact our personal injury lawyers at (866) 320-4770. We can help you determine what your legal rights are and if youre eligible for compensation.