As much fun as it sounds, a boating trip involves certain risks. To avoid any unforeseen circumstance, a pre-departure checklist is made, which will help you set a safe sail in the water. The checklist makes sure to cover all bases and is ready for anything that can happen out on the water.

Jot down and refer to a pre-departure checklist for all your boating trips that will help you to be prepared in case of any accident or an emergency.

Checklist for Pre-departure Includes

The to-do list must-haves include:

Weather Forecast:
Never forget to check the weather forecast before planning your trip. Even after that, there is still a chance of uncertainty. So, take a handheld radio with you to monitor the weather. Keep the passengers updated on the location and proper use of the radio.

Pen down Your Float Plan:
Construct and share your float plan with the passengers- family, friends, and/or any other reliable parties.

Safety Meeting:
Educate passengers about the best practices at the time of boating. You must review properly all the procedures for falls overboard, capsizing, and collision. Moreover, it is a good practice and quite essential to inform the boaters of the locations of all safety tools onboard and how to use them. This comes in handy when situations get worse in water.

Amongst the must-haves, keep a first aid kit at an accessible location and tell passengers where these items are kept so that they can use them at the time of ease.

Thorough Documentation Check:
Make a list of all the necessary documentation needed. This includes boat registration, radio license, any sort of fishing permits required, and, most importantly, a boater’s education card. Make sure that they are safely stored in a dry place.

Equipment For Boating

  • A Toolbox of spare parts.
  • Fuels and batteries to check coolant and oil levels for the trip.
  • Make sure that vents are working. Always ensure that the ventilation blower is functioning properly.
  • Anchor and lines along with fenders are a good decision.
  • Make sure your boat has one PDF – a personal floatation device (life Jacket) or two for a single person.
  • The boat of over 16 ft long should have at least one throw-able PDF on the board.
  • You should have a U.S. “Coast approved” fire extinguisher in an accessible location by all.
  • It should be securely placed, with a long expiry date, and in acceptable working condition.
  • Your boat must have a minimum of 2 sound signaling apparatus such as an air horn, bell or whistle on board.
  • Every person must carry a flashlight with spare batteries.
  • Make sure your boat has all required navigation lights in its correct positions and is fully functional.
  • Your passengers should know about the emergency and distressing signals, the location of any distress signals, and methods to use them.
  • Place the flares at a dry and accessible place, like a distress signal box.

Final Words

Making a pre-departure checklist for your boat prepares you for any mishap that may happen onboard. Watergate Marina makes sure that every experience is safe and secure.

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