Insurance Insight: Boating safety: Do not be stumped

Published 12:00 am Friday, March 29, 2002


We can help reduce insurance costs by eliminating preventable claims. It pays to take a pro-active approach to your personal health, auto and home safety.

As you know, our state experienced record-breaking temperatures the last couple of summers along with near-drought conditions.

While we recouped a lot of water table deficit over the winter, the general effects of less rainfall in recent years has left some of our waterways and lakes more hazardous to boating than they once were.

Insurers pay large amounts each summer on boating accidents.

Lower water levels create a higher concentration of stumps, logs and limbs closer to the surface, and in a smaller area.

It is critical to take proper precautions when engaging in water sports any time, regardless of whether water levels are considered high or low.

Remember these boating safety tips to reduce your chances of being “stumped.”

1. Know the waterway. If you are unfamiliar with a particular lake or river, take it easy.
Bring along someone familiar with the area if possible.
2. Slow down. If water levels are down, this is especially important.
Low water creates new challenges and dangers.
3. Stay in the channels when possible.
4. Raise the motor propeller when you are traversing a known shallow area.
5. Polarized sunglasses can help improve your vision at and just below the surface.
6. Always wear the proper sized life jacket. Summer is a terrific time, and water sports are always a favorite.

Practice boating safety, to help make all of your memories great ones.