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I recently bought a small fishing boat. My first task was to equip it with all the safety needs. I started making a list of everything I needed to pass a safety check. One of my friends is a retired Fish & Game Officer and he helped me with my list.

Each state has their own rules and requirements for boaters. I live in Tennessee and have included items necessary in this state.

Tennessee Boating Safety Rules & Regulations

The official Tennessee.gov website offers free information about boating safety and registration.

My Pre-Departure Checklist

  • Life Vests One life vest/preserver for each person in the boat. You have at least one floatation device that came be thrown to someone in the water depending on the size of your boat. All children 12 years of age or younger are required to wear a life vest.
  • Registration: ALL powered boats are required to be registered. Keep a copy of the registration in the boat. Keep copies of all important papers concerning your boat in the boat. Keep the originals at home. Keep them in a water proof container. Laminating your papers offers some protection as well. Get a “tamper-free” lock for your trailer. This will prevent it from getting stolen while out boating.
  • Water to prevent dehydration. Being out on the water, you can get dehydrated easily without realizing it.
  • No Alcohol. Most recreation areas have stiff penalties for just having alcoholic beverages in the boat.
  • At least one paddle or oar.
  • Fire extinguisher.
  • First Aid kit.
  • Air horn.
  • Sun screen.
  • An anchor large enough to secure the boat.
  • I carry a small one gallon can of extra fuel.
  • Flash light or spot light.
  • Safety lights: If you operate your boat between sun down and sun rise or in limited light conditions you are required to have the following lights:
    • Rear running light (white) that can be seen for at least two miles.
    • Depending on the state, you may be required to have a “masthead” light according to the size of your boat.
    • Front lights, red for the port side (left) of the boat, green for the starboard (right) side of the boat.
    • If anchored , you must have a light that can be seen 360 degrees for at least two miles.

Posted on September 23rd, 2007 at 04:17 by Alex Smith in Boat Safety - Comments (0)

There are almost 200,000 reported accidents from ladder use in America every year. The people of the American Ladder Institute, are becoming more concerned at this rate because we Americans are becoming more and more over-weight.

The “old trusty” ladder you’ve had for years might not be adequate anymore. All ladders are rated according to the maximum weight they are suppose to carry. The 250lb. person now may be climbing up a ladder with a tool belt and materials that will push the weight restrictions over the limit.

Ladders come in different sizes and shapes. I have step ladders, extension ladders and also a Werner Ladder that can be configured in all three shapes: step ladder, scaffolding, and extension ladder. Again my ladders are made of all three materials, wood, aluminum, and fiberglass. Each ladder has a specific use for what the ladder is made of and the configuration of the ladder. Aluminum ladders generally are lighter but may not carry the needed weight. The fiberglass and wood ladders can be much heavier but they can be used in electrical projects or when the ladder may come in contact with electrical wires since they do not transmit electrical current.

The proper way to carry a ladder is parallel to the ground. This way you don’t come in contact with over-head obstructions or wires that may cause electrical shock or injury to you.

No matter what the project is that you are using a laddder for NEVER stand on the top rung or platform of the ladder. Be sure it’s safely stabilized and climb the ladder facing it. Use both hands and center your body in the ladder. Position the ladder so you can adequately reach the area you are going to work in. It’s always good to have a second person at the bottom of a ladder when using a taller extension ladder to keep it more stabilized.

So the next time you get you ladder out think safety and use the correct ladder for the job.


Posted on September 7th, 2007 at 04:49 by Alex Smith in Home Safety,ladder safety - Comments (0)

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