Great Lakes - Safe Boating
National Safe Boating Week - May 20-26, 2017
The Wear It! campaign promotes boating safety and life jacket safety by encouraging boaters to wear life jackets. National Safe Boating Week: May 20-26, 2017.
The National Weather Service has partnered with the National Safe Boating Council, a NOAA Weather-Ready Nation Ambassador to help promote safe boating practices. During Safe Boating Week, NWS will send a Public Information Statement and broadcast public service announcements on NOAA Weather Radio All Hazards.
Have the Right Life Jacket?
Do you have the right life jacket? Nearly all boating-related fatalities are the result of drowning and most of these fatalities may have been prevented if a life jacket had been worn. Your life jacket is the most important piece of boating safety gear, so be sure to always Wear It!
Select the Right Style
Life jackets are designed for a boater's recreational water activity. A life jacket may be inherently buoyant; using foam or other buoyant materials to stay afloat; or inflatable; providing buoyancy when inflated by relying on CO2 cylinders.
Be sure each life jacket is U.S. Coast Guard-approved and appropriate for the water activity by checking the label printed on the inside of the life jacket.
Make Sure It Fits
You don't want your life jacket too large or too small. A snug fit is a proper fit. Remember, life jackets for adults do not work for children.
- Make sure the life jacket is properly fastened.
- All straps, buckles or zippers are secure.
- Hold your arms straight up over your head.
- Ask a friend to grasp the tops of the arm openings and gently pull up.
How to Care for Your Life Jacket
Refer to the Owner's Manual for specific maintenance requirements.
All Life Jacket Care
- Use properly
- No rips, waterlogging or mildew
- Dry after use
- Hand wash in mild detergent
- Store in a dry place when not boating
Inflatable Life Jacket Care
- Test: Orally inflate & holds air for 16 hours
- Inspect inflation mechanism (not discharged, no corrosion, and properly installed)
- If it holds air, repack and use
The North American Safe Boating Campaign is produced under a grant from the Sport Fish Restoration and Boating Trust Fund administered by the U.S. Coast Guard.