Opening day of Boating Season

Boating Season is nearly underway. During this time, it is important that the public be familiar with boating and swimming safety information for their summer water activities. Seattle Police and Fire Department personnel want to ensure that the time people spend in the water is safe and enjoyable. For this purpose, we have developed the following list of important water safety tips. We encourage people, even those who consider themselves experienced at water safety, to review safety information prior to entering the water.

· Insist properly fitted PFDs (Personal Floatation Devices) be worn by everyone riding in a boat or being towed on an inner tube, skis or other devices.

· Never allow alcohol to be consumed when around the water.

· Never swim in unsupervised areas and never swim alone.

· Do not dive or jump into unfamiliar or shallow water – spinal cord or head injuries may occur.

· Go to shore when changing places in small boats or canoes.

· Limit boating to safe weather and water conditions.

· Teach your children to swim or enroll them in swimming classes.

· Children should not jump into the water on their own until they are able to climb out on their own.

· As a general rule, if a river carries a stick faster than you can walk on shore, then it’s moving too fast for safe swimming.

· Don’t swim in or around lily pads – arms or legs may become entangled.
Please visit http://www.seattle.gov/police/units/harbor/harbor.htm for more information on the Seattle Police Harbor Unit.

Please visit http://www.seattle.gov/fire/firefighting/operations/marinerescue.htm for more information on the Seattle Fire Marine Emergency Response Team.

For additional information or assistance, please contact the Seattle Police Department Media Response Unit at (206) 684-5520 or Seattle Fire Department Public Information Officer Dana Vander Houwen at (206) 386-1679.