The Fourth of July can be a time when boating is common, for both personal recreational vessels and commercial fleets. Even after it's passed, companies should take the time to think about the implications for their activity if they operate anywhere near waters where vacationers are likely to be.
Anyone who may see marine activity during the holiday period should make sure that the boat insurance coverage they are using is enough to protect them. If captains follow the rules and have their vessels accounted for, it can make the consequences of a marine disaster easier to manage, especially during a time of such high activity.
The danger can persist for the entire vacation weekend, and individuals should be prepared. A piece for Gulf Live recently noted the number of violations that occurred over that three-day period in the Biloxi area of Mississippi, which totaled fewer than 30. Considering more than 350 boats were inspected, this seems like a pretty good sign for overall safety.
In that source, the Department of Marine Resources' Chief of Marine Patrol, Keith Davis, described the need for proper behavior as well as protection when residents go out boating. The risk of intoxication is another factor that can add to the potential danger.
"We want people to enjoy our waterways through boating and fishing, but we also want them to be safe," he said. "Boaters need to make sure they have the proper safety equipment on board for their protection and their passengers' protection."
The hazards presented by boating will vary depending on geography and popularity. Boat operators should go above and beyond local regulations to ensure the safety of their crew and vessels.