As our boating, kayaking, and canoeing communities are more active during summer months, it is important to keep these safety precautions and practices in mind while venturing out on the waterways.
Before heading out, be sure to check that required boat safety equipment is up to date with the U.S. Coast Guard regulations.
Try to stay inland and close to home in the event an emergency arises.
Be sure to wear approved life jackets at all times.
Follow all traditional safe boating and U.S. Coast Guard rules, and Harbormaster guidance. Boaters should always be alert, follow the rules of the nautical road and maintain a safe distance between vessels.
Alcohol is the leading contributing factor in boating accidents. Never operate a vessel while impaired or intoxicated by drugs or alcohol.
Under Brianna’s Law, all operators of motorized vessels must take a safe boating course and earn a safe boating certificate by 2025. As of January 1st, 2022 all motorboat operators born on or after January 1, 1988 must complete a safety course to operate a motorboat this season. Visit NYS Parks or Town of Hempstead's Tourism page for a list of safe boating courses.
File a float plan. Let someone know the details of your trip before you depart in case of an emergency.
Consider weather conditions and water temperature when planning an outing.