Boating is a great summer activity, but there are some things you need to know when piloting any craft on the water. Boat safety training classes offer information for first-time boaters to help them get started. More advanced classes can provide technical skills and training for more experienced boaters to continue to improve their safety.
When you buy your first boat, you may think all you need to do is put it in the water and go, but there are rules and regulations that are important on many waterways. You also need to understand the safety equipment requirements for your boat, and those can change with the size of the boat.
For most boats, life jackets are must-have items for each person on board, a fire extinguisher is needed, and sometimes flares or other signaling devices are mandated. The equipment requirements are set by the local government in each state, so you need to check the laws where you are boating.
A boat safety training class will start with all the things you need to know about that equipment, the capacity of the craft, and the operating rules you need to observe. Your new boat should be something you can enjoy, and starting with some training that will keep you safe allows you to get comfortable with the boat and enjoy the time on the water without anyone getting hurt or injured because of something you did or didn't do.
Advanced Training Classes
Boat safety training does not only mean wearing a life vest. In advance boat safety training, you may learn things like weather prediction, navigating with GPS and compasses, or navigating through shallow waterways. These advanced courses typically require the attendee to have completed a basic boat safety course first.
When you are looking for an advanced boat safety training course, an excellent place to start is online. You may also want to check the local boat shop or the marina you use, or you could ask some of your fellow boaters where they found courses and if they felt they offered good information.
Online Training Courses
Many states now allow you to take your boat safety training course online in the comfort of your home. The amount of time involved in the course will vary from one state to the next, and most training programs have a fee that covers training and the test at the end to get your certification.
Some of the training programs are offered by private companies, so check with them to ensure that they are state-approved before you start the boat safety training that they provide.