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Take a boater's safety course

A boat in open water

Know the laws before you launch. It's a simple mantra that all boaters should take seriously.

"It is the responsibility of all boaters to know the rules of the water," said Brad Seeley, senior marine product manager for Foremost Insurance Company. "One of the best ways to learn is to take a boater's safety course. Instruction can help save lives." According to the 2015 United States Coast Guard data, 90% of boating deaths occurred in accidents with operators that hadn't taken a safety course.

A safety course not only provides essential knowledge about boat handling, navigation and required equipment; it may also be required in order to operate a vessel. Depending on the state, the driver's age and the type of craft, passing a boater's safety course may be mandatory. "Boating laws vary. It's essential that all boaters check their states' websites to find out what's necessary," added Seeley. "Regardless of what's required, a safety course is good idea for any boat or personal watercraft operator."

According to the 2015 United States Coast Guard data, 90% of boating deaths occurred in accidents with operators that hadn't taken a safety course.

Passing a certified safety course may also make the boat owner eligible for a discount on their insurance policy premium. "Discounts depend of the carrier and the type of course passed," remarked Seeley. "An insurance agent will be able to check if the safety course the policyholder took qualifies."

Your safety is number one to us. Stay safe this summer on the shore and on your boat.



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