Preventing Common Mistakes While Boating
If you’re new to boating, or even if you’re not, mistakes will happen from time to time. Almost all boating errors occur by being in a hurry or not paying attention. The upside to these errors is that they can easily be avoided by paying attention, being prepared and completing a pre-departure checklist.
Here are some common boating mistakes and how to avoid them.
Failure to install the drain plug.
This is probably the most common mistake people make. A simple rule to follow: “Don’t assume the plug is in and always double check”.
Overloading the Boat
Every boat has a capacity limit. Overloading a boat can result in flooding, capsizing and sinking. This mistake can be avoided by knowing what the capacity is and managing the people and gear on board.
Not being Prepared
It is a good idea to go through a safety checklist before your departure. You will want to check your equipment, obtain charts of your destination, check the weather forecast, making sure you have enough fuel for your trip, and preparing for the unexpected by packing necessary emergency items.
The most important thing you should remember is to properly secure the anchor line. Another thing to pay attention to is the amount of line you need to pay out in order to anchor.
According to the U.S. Coast Guard, an anchor line should be anywhere from 5-7 times the depth of the water when conditions are calm. Boaters are recommended to use a line that is roughly 10 times the depth in poor or windy conditions.