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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)

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