143035_DBW Course_r3

Chapter 5 X Accident Prevention and Rescue

Trends in Boating Accidents As in any other sport, an accident can always happen. Among the statewide trends: ƒ According to the U.S. Coast Guard, capsizing and falling overboard are the leading causes of recreational boating fatalities. ƒ As the population ages, accidents involving people over the age of 40, and the injuries and deaths resulting from these accidents, is growing. ƒ Thirty-five percent of youth operators involved in accidents were under 16 years old, and 88 percent of youth operators involved in accidents were operating personal watercraft. The Causes of Accidents ƒ Boating accident numbers show that a high percentage of accidents, espe cially fatal ones, are due to operator error when boaters use poor judgment, don’t pay attention, don’t have enough experience, and behave irresponsibly. ƒ Many accidents, especially those that cause serious injury or death, happen when boaters drink alcohol. ƒ Many accidents happen because boaters don’t have the right equipment, or any safety equipment at all. Accidents also happen when operators don’t know how to use their equipment, or don’t know the limits of their equip ment. And they may not maintain their equipment correctly. ƒ Current trend shows the majority of personal watercraft involved in accidents in California are either borrowed or rented.

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California Course for Safe Boating

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