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These 3 tips can keep you safe on the sea

When you take a boat out for the afternoon, you expect to have a fun time without any threat of real danger. Unfortunately, there are many hazards on the open water, and if a boat isn't maintained well or you don't take precautions, you could fall victim to them.

What can you do to stay safe when you're taking a boat out for the day? Here are several tips that can help you prepare for heading out, whether you're on your own or traveling with friends and family.

1. Prepare the life jackets

Safety is the number-one priority when you head out into the open water of the ocean. Instead of assuming you or anyone else can swim well enough to make it to shore if something goes wrong, check to make sure there are enough life jackets on board for everyone. Additionally, you may want to have a life saver or other flotation devices handy.

2. Get a vessel safety check before you head out

A vessel safety check is free from the United States Coast Guard. It is a check that makes sure your boat has all the required safety equipment on board. A specialist will come look at your boat and provide you with additional boating recommendations and safety tips based on the kind of boat you have and where you plan to use it.

3. Avoid alcohol while you're on your boat

While a beer or two isn't likely to ruin your day out, they could pose a threat to your health. Drinking beer instead of water can lead to dehydration, which can make it harder for you to guide your boat safely. Additionally, drinking and driving can result in accidents, which you want to avoid.

These are three tips for staying safe on the ocean this summer. Take them to heart and enjoy your time away.

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