June 06, 2012
According to the U.S. Coast Guard, wearing a life jacket is still the most important factor in on-the-water safety. Light, breathable vests are available for the hot Florida climate, as are suspender and belt-style inflatable PFDs. Wear them, especially on those Florida lakes and rivers where seasonal low water is posing hazards in the form of bars and submerged timber. To see some different brands and models, click here.
Boating fatalities jumped 12.8 percent in 2011 and are now at the highest level since 1998, according to the U.S. Coast Guard's just released report 2011 Recreational Boating Statistics. Last year, 533 of the 758 boating fatalities resulted from drowning, with 84 percent of the drowning victims not reported as wearing a life jacket. The Coast Guard is urging recreational boaters to make sure everyone on board wears their life jacket at all times on the water.