Lucky for us, Texas has more square miles of inland water than any other state. There are more than 580,000 registered boats in Texas, ranking it 6th in the country. With more and more people enjoying the lakes and rivers every year, it’s important for all boaters to educate themselves on boating skills, boating laws and insurance protection. Here’s how to stay protected:
Wear a Life Vest
Texas State Law requires anyone under 13 to wear a life jacket in the boat at all times. Anyone older must have a life jacket with them that is easy to reach. Lake Patrol Officers or Game Wardens proactively stop boaters to check for life jackets and may issue a $25-$500 fine for non-compliance.
The U.S. Coast Guard estimates that at least 85 percent of people who drown in boating-related accidents were not wearing a personal flotation device (PFD) at the time. It’s vital to not only have a life jacket but to wear it.
Boater Education Course
Mandatory boater education is required for anyone born on or after September 1, 1993 to operate a Personal Watercraft (PWC), sailboat over 14 feet, or motorboat with a motor greater than 15 hp. A boater education class will teach you how to be respectful of other boaters and kayakers as well as buoys and other navigational aids that are placed to keep us safe. BONUS: If you complete a Boater Education Course you will receive a discount on your boater’s insurance through Allstate.
Limit Alcohol Consumption
Alcohol plays a role in 50 percent of all boating accidents. If an accident occurs due to negligent behavior related to alcohol or even because a navigational aid was not followed, the responsible party and likely the boat owner may be sued.
Protect Your Boat and Crew
It’s important to protect your boat and your crew from harm. Whether you spend every day on the water or put your boat in storage for the winter, it’s important to keep your watercraft protected against the unexpected year round. Be sure to know your options regarding the types of boating coverage available.
The cost of boat insurance is more affordable than you might think. You can cover your watercraft and your family for around $20 per month. Plus, there are a number of boat insurance discounts that can save you even more.
As always, if you have any questions give us a call at (512) 710-2185 or schedule a good time for us to call you!