Is boating one of your favorite hobbies? What safety precautions do you take before embarking on water? Studies show that the rate of boating accidents rose by 25.1% in 2020.

Collision, capsizing, and falling overboard are the most common emergencies sailors can face. Even if you only go boating once a year, you can’t overlook the necessary safety precautions. The first thing you can do is prepare a boat emergency kit.

So, what do you need to prepare for these boat emergencies? Continue reading to know what you must prepare and bring on boating activities.

1. Life Jackets and Floatation Device

A life jacket is essential in a boat safety kit. Did you know that going overboard is a boating emergency with most fatalities? All states require everyone on board to have their personal flotation device.

A vessel must also have a throwable floating device for an emergency. You can toss it to the drowning person or to someone who fell. Some of the devices to use are a ring buoyant or a cushion.

You can refer to the USCG’s list of different types of PFDs to determine which device to use.

2. Visual Distress Signal

The law necessitates every vessel to carry a visual distress signal. This allows passengers to alert other sailors and give them their location. This makes it easier for other boats to find the distressed vessel and come to their aid.

There are different visual distress signal packages and sizes suitable for a boat. A vessel under 5 meters must use nighttime flares. Boats over 5 meters must bring a day and night visual signaling device.

3. Sound Distress Signal

You can use sound to alert other boaters. Sound distress signals are effective devices day and night, regardless of clear skies or rain.

Sailors may opt between portable horns, whistles, and bells. You must bring working devices that can produce a sound signal heard for half a mile or more. Passengers must also know how to deliver and recognize different emergency sound signals.

4. Basic Safety Equipment

You need some equipment on your boat emergency kit. It includes a fire extinguisher, a navigation device, a VHF radio, and a bailing tool. You can use these materials for protection during boat emergencies.

5. First Aid Kit

Some people experience sea sickness and minor injuries while on board. With this, you must bring a first aid kit to address medical emergencies. It must include gauze, bandages, alcohol, and wipes.

Bring medicines and medical devices as well for other sicknesses. Put your items in a waterproof container and store them in an accessible location.

Preparing Your Boat Emergency Kit

A boat emergency kit can help you ensure smooth sailing and travel. While no one wishes to be in such a situation, it’s always best to stay prepared. Use this guide to compile everything you need for your emergency kit.

Are you looking for more boat safety tips? Consider checking out our other blog posts. We cover more great guides on staying safe on the water.

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