For those who love the open water, there’s nothing quite like being out on your boat on a nice day. Whether you’re out on a thrill ride or simply relaxing with the waves, there are certain things that you should always have onboard.
Lifejackets/Personal Floatation Devices – This isn’t optional. It doesn’t matter how great of a swimmer you are, you need to have life jackets for yourself and for everyone else onboard. They also need to be the right size and we suggest bringing an extra in case someone decides to come along on the trip at the last minute. Make sure to let everyone know where the life jackets are stored before you get out on the water.
First Aid – You never want to have to use it, but a first aid kit is essential to have on any adventure, and out on the water is no exception. Also, make sure at least one person onboard has basic first aid knowledge.
Anchor – There’s nothing exciting about anchors, but if you want to keep your boat in one place, an anchor is a good way to do it. If you intend to dock or you lose motor power, having an anchor can help.
Tools and Repair Items – Make sure that everything you may need to make patch-ups on your boat is onboard. A multifunction tool like a Swiss Army Knife can be helpful to make small fixes. It also never hurts to have a roll of duct tape.
Rope – Tying the boat up to a dock, towing another boat, or even tying down equipment in rough weather are all reasons to bring some strong rope along.
A Bucket – Buckets are great for storage, but the true reason for bringing a bucket or two is so you can bale out water should you need too. You certainly don’t want to find a leak in your boat, but it's better to have a bucket and not need it than the other way around.
Whistle/Air Horn/Emergency Flares – These items can help alert/signal other boaters of an emergency. They are even more helpful in the dark when your boat may be hard to find, especially in larger bodies of water.
Flashlights – Flashlights have multiple levels of importance on a boat; the obvious being that they can help you see in the dark. They can also help others to see you in the dark. A blinking flashlight can get the attention of someone nearby should you need help at night.
Bring an actual flashlight; not just your phone. With a fresh pair of batteries, they are much more reliable than a smartphone flashlight which will drain battery very quickly.
A Cellphone/Radio – It’s good to have multiple lines of communication to contact friends, authorities, and others in case of an emergency or some other necessity. As mentioned above, smartphones do have a variety of apps that can help you out too. While you don’t want to have to rely on them, they are a good backup plan.
Other Essentials – Bring something for drying off and something for staying warm. Even if you don’t plan on getting in the water, it’s wise to bring some towels anyway. A sweatshirt and sweatpants are good to have packed as well. Nights on the water can get chilly. Bring snacks, drinkable water, and anything else that you might want, just in case you’re out on the water longer than you originally planned.
If you're prepared ahead of time then you'll have some peace of mind and can enjoy your day on the water.
Remember to get boat insurance. We can keep your boat protected even when it's on land. For a free quote, give us a call at (607) 535-6501 or submit a quote on our website.