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Just Be Safe, Just Keep Swimming

We keep saying it, and it’ll eventually be here: summer! Summer is a fan favorite for so many reasons and a lot of those have to do with getting in the water. But with so much fun comes an aspect of danger. Drowning is the 3rd leading cause of unintentional injury-related death, accounting for 7% of all injury-related deaths. And drowning isn’t even the only danger of the water. Here are some top tips for keeping yourself and your family safe on the water this year.


ALWAYS Wear A Life Jacket

Children 12 and under are required to wear a lifejacket; 13 and older are highly encouraged. There should also always be as many lifejackets as there are people on the boat so everyone can be safe


Know The Hazards of the Water

There can be rocks or other naturally occurring hazards in the water- especially in the spring with run off coming down off the mountains


Know Your Limits

Don’t head for big water until you have plenty of experience and be honest with yourself! If you don’t feel comfortable in a given set of conditions, return to shore. You should also always be aware that some watercraft may not be suitable for your water geography.


Impairment= Accidents

Don’t use watercraft if you shouldn’t be driving an automobile; BUI laws are a real thing and apply to all vessels.


Carry the Essentials in Every Watercraft Vessel

Communications; comfort- pack extra, dry clothes in a dry bag; safety- flags, lifejackets, etc.


Prepare for the Worst Case Scenario

Be aware how weather is changing and how that affects the water and plan accordingly


Know the Danger of Cold Water Immersion

The average water temperature of Idaho’s water is 52o F, even in the summer. Know the stages of cold water immersion; cold shock, swim failure, hypothermia, and post immersion collapse


Know Your Laws

Boating laws and federal requirements for boats vary from state to state, so make sure you’re aware and comfortable with all the laws of your state and comply with them.


It’s always a good idea to do your own research for every extracurricular you participate in, and water sports are no different. As always, be aware of your surroundings, protect yourself, and be prepared to have the best water experience every time.