"Life jackets float … you don't". Life jackets (also referred to as Personal Floatation Devices or PFDs) do save lives and are the most important piece of safety equipment in your boat. Make sure you follow the boating rules for your state regarding life jackets. Be sure they fit snugly to avoid the PFD coming off if you should accidentally fall in the water. Frayed or damaged PFDs should be replaced . Smaller children should wear PFDs made for them . The U.S. Coast Guard label affixed to the PFD will aid in selecting the appropriate type and size.
Boats must be equipped with appropriate emergency equipment (i.e ., first aid kit, oars and paddles, anchor, sound device , fire extinguisher, navigation lights, and 100 feet of line or rope ).
If your boat capsizes, do not attempt to swim to shore . Stay with the craft until the boat can be safely beached . Remember, hypothermia is a possibility during most of the yea r. Life jackets help to minimize loss of body heat.
Avoid sunburn, wear a wide brimmed hat, long sleeved shirt, long trousers and use sunscreen. Sunscreen alone is not sufficient for long exposure to the sun.
Always carry a change of clothing in a waterproof container. Dry clothes could save your life by preventing hypothermia if the clothes you are wearing become wet. It does not have to be "cold " for hypothermia to strike .