Ready, Set, Wear It!
Summer is here and with it comes time for fun, sun, family and friends. Much of that fun in Texas is spent around lakes, rivers and the Gulf of Mexico. With a wide variety of water sports and fishing, Texas is a great destination for anyone who enjoys time on the water.
Those who regularly boat know water means danger. According to Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD), Texas has more inland waterways than any other state, and we rank sixth in the country for watercraft registrations. We also rank about fourth in the nation for boating fatalities according to the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG).
Boating with friends is a great way to spend a day or vacation, but common mistakes — and negligence — can ruin an outing or end a life. In August 2011, TPWD reported 85 percent of boaters who drowned were not wearing life jackets.
To kick off National Safe Boating week on May 19 of this year, the National Safe Boating Council sponsored the third annual Ready, Set, Wear It event. Almost 4,000 people around the world wore life jackets to promote safe boating and life jacket use.
Boating regulations in Texas require:
- All children under 13 wear a Coast Guard approved personal floatation device (PFD) on watercraft 26 feet or less in length
- All vessels under 16 feet must have an appropriate PFD for each person on board
Follow the rules and make sure you make only good memories this summer.