Prepare for Boating Season by Taking a Washington Boating Safety Course

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In 2011, boating accidents in Washington increased by almost 30 percent from the year before. To reduce accidents, Kalkomey Enterprises, Inc. reminds boaters to take an official Washington boating safety course.

Boating Safety, Boating Course, Boater Education, Boating Safety Course
The purpose of any boating safety course or training material is to prepare boaters for a variety of scenarios in and out of the water.

Public and private organizations are ramping up efforts to increase boater awareness of safety guidelines as Washington’s boating season and National Safe Boating Week begin. In 2011, boating accidents in Washington increased by almost 30 percent from the year before – underscoring the need for easier access to Washington boating safety courses and other educational materials.

“We monitor the boating industry year round and with warmer weather comes the increased potential for boating accidents. Education and awareness are key factors in preventing accidents. The purpose of any boating safety course or training material is to prepare boaters for a variety of scenarios in and out of the water,” said Kurt Kalkomey, president of Kalkomey Enterprises, Inc.

Washington boating safety courses are available year round, however, spikes in course registrants are typically observed in early spring and summer. In Washington, boat operators are required by law to carry a state boater education card when operating motorboats with 15 horsepower or greater, including personal watercraft. While those born before Jan. 1, 1955, are exempt from carrying a boater safety education card, Washington State Park officials encourage everyone to complete a course before hitting the water. To take an official Washington boating safety course, visit http://www.boat-ed.com/washington/.

Most recent national data from the United States Coast Guard details 4,588 accidents in 2011, including 758 fatalities and 3,081 injuries. The majority of these accidents occurred from May to September, with 77 percent of the reportable incidents for the year. In Washington, there were 93 boating accidents in 2011, resulting in 15 deaths and 54 injuries.

From a national perspective, not wearing a life jacket was reported as a factor in more than 80 percent of victims who drowned in 2011. The National Council for Safe Boating is among several organizations leading initiatives to promote boating safety education and reduce boating accidents. National Safe Boating Week will be held May 18-24, 2013, with events coordinated across the country. One of the highlights of the week is “Wear Your Life Jacket to Work Day.” The purpose of the campaign is to remind boaters about basic safety measures. For more information about Safe Boating Week, visit http://www.safeboatingcampaign.com.

In Washington, all vessels must be equipped with U.S. Coast Guard–approved life jackets. The quantity and type depend on the length of the boat and the number of people on board. In addition, each life jacket must be readily accessible, though safety experts recommend that everyone wear their life jacket whenever they are on the water. The online boating safety course offered at boat-ed.com/washington provides more details about life jacket requirements.

In addition to online boating safety courses, Boat Ed®, a branch of Kalkomey Enterprises, Inc., also offers Adventures in Boating Washington Handbook. This official boating e-book covers boating laws and safety information for Washington. Adventures in Boating Washington Handbook is available at http://bookstore.kalkomey.com/products/handbook-adventures-in-boating-washington.

About Kalkomey
Kalkomey, parent company of Boat Ed® and boat-ed.com, is an official provider of recreational safety education products for all 50 states. An American company based in Dallas, Texas, Kalkomey produces print and Internet courses that have provided official safety certification since 1995. Kalkomey offers safety courses in boating, hunting, bowhunting, safe handgun use, and off-road vehicle and snowmobile operation. For more information, visit http://www.kalkomey.com.

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