Better Safe Than Sorry: Be Safe in Your Boat

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After getting your official Canadian boating license from, you’ll be free to meet the waters in person. However, you still have to take some safety measurements. We’ve written this article for those of you who need to understand better what it’s like to be on a boat – you, the water, and the sun.

If you violate the common boat navigation rules

Boats have rules just like cars do. You are the boat operator, and you need to be a good person and take into account the Inland and International Navigation Rules. The most common rules come about a proper lookout and excessive speeding. Make sure you get the idea before going on the water.

Maintaining a proper lookout.

When you’re on the water, you need to maintain a proper lookout every second by hearing and sight. If there’s a risk of collision, you need to be careful and pay attention to recognize the obstacle – especially if we’re talking about the collision with another boat. If there’s also a crew with you on the boat, perhaps you’d want to choose some trusting people to make them be your eyes and ears.

Maintaining a safe speed

You need to be careful at the speed limits and don’t exceed them. If there’s no speed limit posted, you need to keep a safe speed. A safe speed is the one that allows you to take action in time when it comes to a collision or an obstacle – you need to have time to stop the boat at a safe distance from the barrier, shore, dock or even other boats. You also have to take into consideration the depth of the water, the weather and the water conditions (see if there’s some fog or rain) and the background lights if this happens at night.

How to determine the position and the course of direction

When you find yourself in the boating traffic, you can figure out who has the right of way if you can determine the approximate position of the boats and the distance between them, by using “sectors of navigation.” This has to do with the port sector, the stern sector, and the starboard sector.

Figuring out the risk of the collision

To determine the risk of the collision, you have to make the most out of your resources. If you can’t figure it out (and sometimes you won’t) by sight and hearing, then you must assume that it does happen and you need to take the caution measurements always to stay safe.

It’s the job of the Coast Guard to ask all the people who drive a boat to recognize the fact that the risk of collision still exists, even if they’re about to change the direction of the boat, especially if it’s a big boat we’re talking about.