Maryland Water Safety
A look at some
common hazards and
tips for having a safe
and fun experience.
Maryland – The Perfect Place for
Maryland’s beautiful waterways are
perfect for boating and water-based
activities. To make sure you and your
passengers have the best experience,
you’ll need to create the safest
Let’s take a look at why boating safety is so important and what steps
you can take to ensure the safety of your next boating adventure.
Common Boating Mishaps
Boating accidents can result from:
Intoxication of the operator
Operator recklessness or inexperience
Drowning – By the Numbers
According to the CDC, 10 people die from unintentional
drowning every day.
72% of boating deaths are due to drowning.
20% of the fatalities are age 14 or younger, primarily in
80% of drowning victims are male.
African-Americans across all ages incur these injuries at
a much higher rate than whites: 3 times as high in the
age range of 5-14, and 5.5 times higher in the age range
Common Causes of Drowning
Inability to swim
Failure to wear a life jacket
Absence of Life Guards
Your Best Friend on the Water
In 2010, the Coast Guard reported that of the 672
drowning incidents that occurred while boating, 88% of
victims were not wearing life jackets.
There are many different types of life jackets and
flotation devices that you can make available to
passengers on your boat.
The CDC suggests you use only Coast Guard approved
Nasty weather conditions can turn a pleasant boating
experience into a very scary one. If at all possible, you
should get out of the water whenever storm clouds start to
Lightning – 400 injuries and 55 to 60 deaths a year.
Tornadoes – Maryland averages 6 tornadoes a year.
Nationally, tornadoes cause 1,500 injuries and 60-65
fatalities a year.
Floods – 90 fatalities a year, making it the leading cause
of storm-related deaths
Negligent boating not only carries stiff fines, it also
endangers the lives of you and your passengers. Here are
examples of what constitutes negligent operation of a boat
• Operating in a swimming area
• Excessive speed
• Hazardous skiing
• Improper seating
• Operating boat under the influence.
Alcohol and BUI
Approximately half of all boating accidents are alcohol
Alcohol use was involved in up to 70% of deaths
associated with water recreation.
Alcohol use was involved 1 in 5 boating deaths.
Legal Limit for Alcohol Intoxication by a boat operator is
.08% blood alcohol content.
Maryland Boat Safety Education
“The Maryland Boating Safety Education Law requires
that any person born on or after July 1, 1972, must have
in their possession a certificate of boating safety
education while operating a numbered or documented
vessel on Maryland waters.” -- From the Boat US
Here is a link to the Boat Maryland Course.
Shark Attacks – A Real Danger?
Chances of a shark attack are 1 in 11.5 million. But because
we know that sharks are lurking somewhere under water
when we do venture into the ocean, fear of an attack is
not completely unjustified.
Avoid Shark Attacks by:
• Staying in groups
• Get out of the water when
Injured on the Water?
Boating or drowning accident? You could be eligible to receive
compensation if negligence was involved. Equipment could have
malfunctioned, proper safety procedures not followed, or
alcohol may have been involved.
We can help what determine what happened.
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