Are You Properly Prepared For The 2023 Boating Season?

During Boating Safety Week 2023, it is important to prioritize communication devices to ensure the safety of boaters. Here are some essential communication devices that boaters should consider:

  1. VHF Radio: A very high frequency (VHF) marine radio is one of the most important communication devices for boaters. It allows you to communicate with other boats, marinas, and the Coast Guard. Make sure to have a VHF radio onboard and know how to operate it.

  2. Cell Phone: Carry a fully charged cell phone in a waterproof case or a dry bag. It can be useful for making emergency calls or contacting nearby marinas or authorities when needed. Another option would be a Garmin Inreach Mini. This has global satellite service to allow you to call for help regardless of where you are in the world, given that cell phone coverage off shore could be questionable depending how far asea you go.

  3. Personal Locator Beacon (PLB): A PLB is a small device that, when activated, sends out a distress signal with your location to search and rescue authorities. It can be a crucial tool in emergencies, particularly when you are out of range of other communication devices.

  4. Satellite Phone: If you are boating in remote areas or areas with limited cell phone coverage, a satellite phone can provide reliable communication. Satellite phones utilize satellite networks to make calls, send messages, and even access weather information.

  5. Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon (EPIRB): An EPIRB is a distress beacon designed to transmit your location to search and rescue authorities via satellite. It is typically activated manually or automatically when submerged in water. EPIRBs are essential for boaters venturing into open waters.

  6. Flares: Visual distress signals such as flares can be vital for attracting attention during emergencies. Carry a selection of approved marine flares on your boat and make sure you know how to use them safely and effectively. There are many options for flares, from the hand held, to flare guns, to electronic flares. Just be sure you have a few on board.

Remember, it's important to familiarize yourself with the operation of these communication devices and ensure they are in good working condition before heading out on the water. Additionally, always check local regulations and guidelines to stay informed about any specific communication device requirements in your area.

Be safe and have a great 2023 boating season!

Boating safetyGarminMarine radioOnline marine supplies

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