National Safe Boating Week 2020

Created in 1958, National Safe Boating Week kicks off every year right before Memorial Day weekend, the unofficial start of summer. Meant to remind American boaters to be conscientious during the holiday weekend and the summer boating season, this year's National Safe Boating weeks falls on May 16-22 and is even more important with the additional threat of COVID-19.

“In many areas, the water is open, however, it’s more important than ever that boaters are responsible to limit unnecessary risk not only to themselves, but to other boaters, law enforcement, and first responders,” said Yvonne Pentz, communications director of the National Safe Boating Council, the lead organization of the Safe Boating Campaign.

As of May 1, recreational boating is allowed on San Diego Bay for vessels on which all occupants are members of the same household. There are currently no restrictions in Los Angeles County.

More safety tips for boating and social distancing:
  • Stay up to date on state and local guidance for outdoor recreation.
  • Share a float plan with a family member or friend with the details of your trip in the event of an emergency.
  • Always wear a U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jacket.
  • Carry all required boating safety equipment such as flares, navigation light, a horn or whistle, and a first aid kit.
  • Limit the people aboard your boat to people in your immediate household.
  • Wear a mask or facial covering when in public places.
  • Stay at least six feet away from other people who do not live in your house. Maintain safe distance at the fuel dock or loading up at the marina.
  • Wash hands frequently or use a hand sanitizer, such as after touching a marina gate or fuel pump.
  • Don’t raft up to other boaters or pull up onto a beach next to someone else as it could put you in close proximity to others.
  • Go right from your house to the boat and back so that you don’t have unnecessary contact with anyone.
  • Pack food, water, and other things you may need as restaurants and marina stores may not be open.
  • Never boat under the influence.
  • No distracted boating and travel at safe speeds.
  • Have more than one communication device that works when wet.

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