watersports safety

WATERSPORTS SAFETY TIPS FOR ALL

Whether you are fishing, swimming waterskiing, jetskiing or scuba diving, you are going to have a great time. You’ll continue to have a good time as long as you remember to stay safe. It’s easy to forget about the risks involved. It’s extremely important to curb your enthusiasm and ensure you follow some basic safety rules when enjoying any kind of watersport.

Create your own checklist for the day and when getting ready for each activity. That way you can also teach your children to get into the right habits too. Here is a look some tips you can use to help you with your own watersports safety checklist before anyone gets hurt.

KNOW HOW TO SWIM

It’s crucial to know how to swim if you are going to get involved in watersports. Anyone who can’t swim should not be getting involved in watersports until they do.

CHILDREN NEED TO BE SUPERVISED

It takes a while for us to know we are mortal as we grow up. Young males are particularly fearless. You only need to look at car crash statistics to know this is true and not just hearsay. Children involved in watersports must be supervised by children at all times. Young children are at a higher risk of drowning and should never be involved in watersports without being supervised. It always helps to have more than one adult supervising when a number of kids are in or on the water having fun.

ALWAYS WEAR A LIFEJACKET

It doesn’t matter how well you can swim, wearing a lifejacket is always required. If you fall or you knock your head, you won’t be swimming very well. A lifejacket is your backup for all kinds of situations that can and do happen.

NEVER GO OUT ALONE

You should never be alone swimming or diving. This includes going for a swim on the beach when there is no one around. Always make sure someone is with you at all times when you are in or on the water. It doesn’t matter whether you are surfing, kayak fishing, swimming or fishing on the water, never do it alone.

LET OTHERS KNOW WHERE YOU ARE GOING

A float plan is a plan of where you are going and when you are due to return. You don’t have to file one formally, but you do need to let someone who is going with you and your crew know where you are going and you are due back. This is an absolute must.

KNOW THE REGULATIONS

Wherever you are, make sure you know the local regulations. Different regions have different rules. This can be as simple as making sure you know about the dangers of swimming in a particular area to know the rules of the waterways.

PROTECT AGAINST THE SUN

We say it time and time again because it is all too easy to get extremely burnt without knowing. I’ve done it myself and spent a night in the hospital because of it. I was so red for days it was embarrassing. Always stop to think about protecting yourself and whoever you are with against the sun. You need to constantly reapply protection when enjoying yourself with watersports. I recommend setting an alarm on watch because time goes by fast when you are having fun and it is easy to forget. Protecting yourself against from the sun also means protecting your eyes, polarised sunglasses are perfect for this.

STAY OFF THE ALCOHOL

Alcohol and water might mix well in a glass but they don’t mix well in watersports. Always refrain from drinking any alcohol before and during any boating and watersport activities. Stay safe by staying sober, you will perform much better at the same time. Drunk people on the water simply look dangerously stupid.

 


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Jake Taylor
jake.taylor@dinga.com.au

Jake is a global traveller who has recently called Australia his home again. If he's not travelling, he is writing about it and his experience.