Boating Safety Guide: Staying Safe on the Water

You learned the "rules of the road" before you sat behind the wheel of a car, and you should do the same before taking the helm. Just like studying to get your driver’s license, it is very important to have the boating information and certifications you need to be a safe boater before you hit the water.

In fact, a number of states require powerboat operators to take a boater’s education course and carry a license or certificate proving successful course completion any time they're on the water. By consulting our safe boating guide and obtaining the required certificates beforehand, you not only protect yourself and family but other boaters on the water.

Get Started with a list of our Basic Safe Boating Tips

Pre-Departure Checklist

Before you leave the dock, you'll need to ensure you have the right safety gear and equipment on your boat, as required by regulation. Our Boat Safety Checklist & Safety Equipment list can help.

Boat Safety Checklist & Safety Equipment List

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Inspirational stories, educational articles, and tips for new & experienced captains

Whether you enjoy fishing for bass, trolling for walleye, or casting for catfish, there’s a freshwater fishing boat that’s ideal for you. Learn more about all of your options and compare different styles of freshwater fishing boats.

Download the best weather apps boating by reviewing our list of these top 10 choices that can help you avoid rough seas, dodge storms, and choose destinations with favorable winds and calm conditions.

Pilothouse boats are exactly what they sound like: they have a pilothouse. The pilothouse can take many forms, but as a rule, true pilothouses enclose the helm station on both sides, the front, and the back.