|Whether hunting or fishing boat safety should be priority one.|
As waterfowl hunters take to Utah's waterways, Utah State Parks Boating Education Specialist Chris Haller reminds everyone to have appropriate safety equipment and gear onboard their boats.
He says everyone should wear their life jacket. Don't just have one accessible.
In addition to flotation, life jackets add an additional layer of warmth. Make sure each jacket is U.S. Coast Guard approved, and is of the proper size and fit.
Also take a waterproof survival kit and re-supply it after every use. Kits should include fire starting materials, flares, a flashlight, space blanket, and first aid supplies.
Another good point is to load the boat properly and do not exceed the capacity plate limit. Decoys, boat motors, and other supplies can be heavy, and overloaded boats swamp more easily.
All hunters should develop a float plan and tell a friend or family member where they are going and when they will return.
For more information on boating safety or to take a boating safety course, visit www.stateparks.utah.gov or call (801) 538-BOAT.