Boating season means stay safe out there

Boating season is upon us and the RCMP remind boaters to drive responsibly and stay safe on the water.

Boating season is upon us and the RCMP remind boaters to drive responsibly and stay safe on the water.

Before heading out onto any lake, ensure that all of the required equipment is available and in working order.

Most, if not all, boating collisions can be avoided. Some of the most common causes of boating collisions are:

Careless or reckless operation—A person operating a vessel in a negligent or grossly negligent manner and/or interfering with the safe operation of a vessel, so as to endanger the life, limb, or property of a person.

Excessive speed—Speed above that which a reasonable and prudent person would have operated under the circumstances that existed. It is not necessarily a travel in excess of the posted limit.

Lack of or improper boat lights—Insufficient and/or improper lights shown by a boat that indicate course, position, and occupation, such as fishing or towing, for example:

• No red, green, or white light

• Navigation lights hidden or covered

• Spot lights and/or docking lights used by a boat operator that interfere with the visibility of the operator of another boat. Docking lights used as “headlights” while navigating at night, which is a very common occurrence on Okanagan lakes.

No proper lookout person—The failure of the operator to perceive danger because no one was serving as lookout or the person so serving failed in that regard.

Operator inattention—Failure on the part of the operator to pay attention to the vessel, its occupants, or the environment in which the vessel is operating.

Operator inexperience—Lack of practical experience or knowledge in operating the boat involved in the accident.

Rules of the road infraction—Violation of the statutory or regulatory rules governing the navigation of vessels, for example: equipment failure, auxiliary equipment failure, communications equipment failure, fire extinguisher not serviceable, sail dismasted, seat broken or loose, sound producing equipment failed, visual distress signals failed, machinery failure, electric system failure, engine failure, fuel system failure, shift failure, steering system failure, throttle failure, ventilation system failure which could result in death by carbon monoxide poisoning