Area celebrates National Safe Boating Week with "Take Me Boating Toledo"

TOLEDO, OH (TOLEDO NEWS NOW) - It's National Safe Boating Week.

The U.S Coast Guard Auxiliary on Saturday inspected vessels making sure they're properly equipped in case there's an emergency.

A Coast Guard chopper out of Detroit demonstrated a water rescue along the Maumee.

Boaters thrown overboard are always at risk to the elements.

"People are concerned about hypothermia. But it's really a cold shock. Gasping for air in the cold water. That's what gets people" says Auxiliary member Cathie Scabaugh.

A rescue can go smoothly and not end in tragedy if a boater takes safety precautions.

Ms Scabaugh boarded the boat of Cal Tuttle.

He's owned the vessel for ten years.

"As a boatowner, I'm responsible for everything on the boat. I want to make sure they have everything to be safe" says Mr. Tuttle.

Auxiliary inspectors aren't looking for lawbreakers.

They just want to make sure  boaters are in compliance with federal and state safety codes.

Boaters are required to carry fire extinguishers, flares and most importantly life jackets.

"The law is they have to be readily available. But a lot of times we find them down in the bilge, moldy and mildewy. Have a useable life jacket" says Ms. Scabaugh.

She says 90 percent of the people who drown were not wearing a life jacket.

Depending on what you think your life is worth, it's a good investment.

As for Mr. Tuttle, his boat passed inspection.

"And you never know when something is going to happen. You think you can be prepared. But the only way to be prepared is to have everything you need to be safe" says Mr. Tuttle.

And that's what the Coast Guard asks of all boaters. Have fun but be safe.

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