Boating at night can be a fun adventure, and have a romantic appeal while the lights and stars reflect off the water. But, even for the most equipped boater, sailing or boating at night adds an extra element of potential danger, and can be far more hazardous.
If you're planning to go boating at night be sure you have the necessary equipment to do so. A waterproof flashlight is just one example of an important tool that could make the difference between life or death.
When the topic of boating at night, or boating while drinking comes up, I'm quickly reminded of a tragic event, which resulted in the death of my cousin over 20 years ago. Prior to the accident, my cousin Fred lived many years on Puget Sound, and he was an excellent swimmer, and an experienced boater as well.
On the tragic night of the accident, my cousin Fred and his friends departed Southworth, Washington in two boats to head up Puget Sound into Seattle. Unfortunately his friends who were driving the boats had also been drinking, and it was very late. The cold waters of Puget Sound were also very dark. Regardless of how well a boat may be equipped for boating at night, nothing can provide protection from the danger of an impaired driver.
While speeding through the cold waters, their two boats collided and the force of the collision threw my cousin from the boat. Fred survived being thrown from the boat, but those who remained on board were not able to determine where Fred was in the water. He helplessly cried out to them for help, but they failed to reach him and he perished at sea! They were unable to locate his body for recovery from Puget Sound until nearly six months later when his remains were found by a fisherman. My cousin Fred absolutely loved Puget Sound, but I'm sure he would have never thought he would have drowned there.
As you're out having fun boating at night, I urge you to use extra precautions, and make sure you are well prepared for any potential tragedy, which could occur at night. Just as you would practice a fire drill in your home, it's also a good idea to practice life preservation steps in case you are faced with an unexpected danger. At least that way in the event of an emergency you would be better prepared to act quickly when time may be limited.
Beyond the power of what any fancy or high tech equipment can offer you for safety, above all please remember that drinking and driving don't mix, either on the road or in the water.
On a lighter note, boating at night can be very fun and relaxing if you go prepared and use good common sense, and don't consume alcoholic beverages. Be safe, and boat responsibly!
Labels: Life Preservation