As we deal with the frigid temperatures, brush off the snow and Ice from our walkways and cars this is when we need to think of preparing for the fast approaching seasons on the water. It does not matter what type of vessel you enjoy, safety always should come first.
Now is the time to focus on getting your safety gear updated and packed at the ready. We all have been there, excited to get out on the water for the first time, either in late Winter, early Spring or Early Summer, we bubble with anticipation, and as we get to the dock, boat ramp or while out on the water, either the Constable, Marine Patrol, or Coastguard approaches you to conduct a safety check. This should be a stress free occurance, and it will be if you insure you prepared early for such an event. The real reason you should have prepped ahead of time is for a real marine emergency.
i took a picture of a chart that New York State has posted at my local Boat Ramp and Marina. It is a sign full of safety tips, gear checklists, and basic navigation for everyone heading out on the water.
New York State Boaters Guide:
When you decide to collect your safety gear make sure you contact or research your local Marine Law Enforcment Office for local, state, and national saftey gear requirements, including certifications, licenses, and permits required.
Always prepare for the worst, and enjoy your time on the water, knowing your ready for anything.