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Ottawa lawyer David Hollingsworth on boating safety and National Water Safety Week.

Boating Accident

Ontario Boating Accident Lawyers David Hollingsworth.  I have 3 kids and make no mistake of it, as they head of to school each morning they know that their school days are numbered for the year and the summer holidays are just around the corner.  For us, summer is swimming , boating and running wild with no schedule. We are all excited for summer holidays and spending some time out on a lake.  For some, these activities have already started on weekends.  Unfortunately, it’s also the time of year when we see a rise in boating accidents.  This week happens to be National Water Safety Week and we need to all have a reminder of the importance of water and boating safety to avoid injuries and drownings.

Obviously, prevention is the single most important thing we can do.  We need to talk and enforce the rules around water, pools, boats and be role models. Yes, that means even the adults throw a life jacket on while boating.

If you are near a pool or own a pool supervision is critical.  Even if children know how to swim, they need to be supervised.  You never know when a child might get a cramp, slip getting into a poll and drownings can happen in an instant. Children can drown in less than 2 inches of water and 38% of children who drown  are from  swimming pools drownings.  Make sure your pool is ALWAYS secured and that no one can get in a gate or in your pool.  Toddlers wander off too often and we know of countless tragic stories of toddlers drowning when their parent or guardian was with them minutes before.

Did you know that drowning is one of the leading causes of death for Canadian children from the ages of 1-4   and that  men between the ages of 15 – 44 have the greatest risk of drowning ?

What can you do to ensure your safety and the safety of others while boating?

  • Always wear a proper fitting  lifejacket
    Always wear a Transport Canada approved and properly fitted Lifejacket or Personal Floatation Device (PFD)  and ensure passengers do the same. It can save your life and the life of your family and friends!
  • Drinking alcohol on a boat is the same as drinking and driving. Don’t do it
  • Sadly,  alcohol is one of the main causes of boating fatalities.
  • Be Prepared:
    Make sure all safety equipment is in good working order and that you and your  passengers are familiar with the equipment. Review with your crew what to do in an emergency in case something happens to you while boating.
  • Take a boating safety course.
    Boating safety courses will help you better understand “the rules of the road”.  These courses can often be done online from the comforts of your own home.
  • Get Certified:
    Get your Pleasure Craft Operator Card or Canadian Boating Licence. All operators of recreational powered watercraft vehicles who operate within Canadian waters must  have their Pleasure Craft Operator Card. There is a $250 fine for boat operators caught without a licence.

I hope we all have a great safe summer season and are able to get out on the water. We live so close to so many great places to swim and boat are very lucky to have all these wonderful places so close to the Ottawa community.  Enjoy your summer responsibly.

Ottawa Ontario Boating Accident lawyer David Hollingsworth

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RL, Ottawa Ontario