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Alcohol and Water DON’T Mix…When Boating Safety is Involved

Source: U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary Public Affairs

WASHINGTON – Statistics compiled by the U.S. Coast Guard show the use of alcohol while boating was the leading contributor to on-the-water accidents…and the needless loss of 126 lives during 2010.

With the long Fourth of July weekend just ahead of us, the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary encourages all boaters to “Boat Responsibly” and be sure you have a designated sober and qualified coxswain on board to ensure your boat gets back to the dock safely. In all, 605 deaths from boating accidents were recorded last year, with July being one of the most hazardous months for boaters.

During 2010, alcohol use was involved in 330 boating accidents and, in addition to contributing to the deaths of 126 boaters, resulted in injuries to 293 others.

Just as in driving a car, alcohol use while boating can lead to impairment of critical senses needed to avoid boating accidents. Slowed reaction time and diminished decision making ability can make your day on the water a less than enjoyable one. Additionally, alcohol can cause dehydration and illness when you are exposed to a hot, sunny day of boating.

“Boat Responsibly” … and don’t mix alcohol with your day on the water. Save the “bourbon and branch” until you return home.

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