As summer approaches, it’s important to remember your boating safety best practices. Meteorologist Michael Behrens and USCG Grand Haven have a reminder!
GRAND HAVEN, Michigan – Summer in Western Michigan can mean a number of different things every year. Key to these being warming temperatures, warming lake waters and an almost irresistible urge to find a boat and get out on the water whenever the opportunity presents itself.
However, before enjoying the coming summer too much, you should take a moment to refresh your knowledge of boating safety and any new regulations that may apply to you and your boat before heading out on the lake. Michigan.
Basic Boating Safety Tips:
The best place to start is uscgboating.org. This website, as well as the Coast Guard app, are the one-stop-shops for everything boater safety, boater regulation and boater information you’ll need for the summer. You can even get personalized information on the equipment required for your length and type of vessel via the Coast Guard app!
Regardless of the specifics, everyone should go out with food, water, life jackets, disposables, a sound-producing device, and a fire extinguisher at a minimum. You must also file a flotation plan with the Coast Guard and make sure someone ashore knows you will be on the water.
This important safety step ensures that if you run into trouble, someone knows where to start looking, or if you’ve been gone too long and might need help.
An important safety factor is knowing when a situation is spiraling out of control and you need to ask for help.
Speaking to Boatswain Second Class Austin Frye of Coastguard Station Grand Haven, he said: “If you feel in danger, or need help and think, ‘I don’t can’t do this “by myself” or “if I don’t do something, it’s going to get worse”, call the Coast Guard.”
At that time, the Coast Guard will assess the situation and, if necessary, intervene on the scene.
From there, you can rest assured that you will be in very good hands. The men and women of the Coast Guard train constantly for any type of search and rescue operation that Lake Michigan may throw their way. They respond to approximately 100 incidents each year and they are certainly up to the task!
Of course, it’s always best to make sure you’ve prepared your trip on the water responsibly and don’t need to put the Coast Guard to the test. However, it is a comfort to know that they are ready to go if you need them!
— Meteorologist Michael Behrens
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