Nothing says "family fun" like spending summer vacation on a pontoon boat! Once that warm weather hits, you don't want to find yourself standing between a Benny owner and their boat. But, in all the rush to get out on the water, it's important to remember the safety concerns associated with any boating activity.
Here are 10 water tubing safety tips to help keep your family safe and smiling all summer long:
Make sure everyone is wearing a Personal Flotation Device (PFD)
Simply having a pile of lifejackets on board will not help you or your passengers in the event of an emergency. Take the time to properly fit yourself as well as each of your passengers with the proper flotation device for their size and weight.
Inspect all of your equipment
While each boat owner should thoroughly inspect their boat, equipment, and recreational gear at the beginning of each season, they should also take the time to look over items such as water tubes, tow ropes, tie on points, and other related objects to ensure that each are secure and in proper working condition.
Safety begins behind the wheel
As the captain, it is your responsibility to ensure the safety of your passengers. This means knowing your riders, not driving under the influence of alcohol or any other mind altering substance, and knowing the rules and regulations related to the body of water in which you plan to boat.
Before you begin water tubing...
Make sure that your water tube rider is ready and safely positioned in the tube before ever starting your boat. Check that the boat, water tube, and towline are all free from obstructions. Set a game plan with the rider in the event that they fall out of the tube so that they know what to expect and what action to take.
Be a responsible driver
First and foremost, the role of the driver is to return the rider to shore safely. This means watching for obstacles in the water, other boaters, wakes, and maintaining a responsible speed.
When towing two or more tubes
When towing multiple water tubes, the driver must exercise additional caution. Traveling at slower speeds with fewer turns will help to prevent collisions or serious injury.
Assign a spotter
Having an extra set of eyes is not only convenient, it's the responsible thing to do. The spotter is able to maintain constant lookout for the riders while the driver navigates the body of water safely.
Not all riders should be treated equal
We all know that feisty, adventure-seeking 12-year-old in our family who's always trying to keep up with the older kids. It's important to remember to set limits based on the safety of each rider. Instead of pushing younger riders beyond their limits to accommodate older riders on the same tube, allow the older riders to enjoy a slower ride to accommodate the limits of the younger riders.
Don't forget to use sunscreen
As with all summertime water activities, water tubing exposes people to more sun than if they were on shore. Apply and reapply sunscreen regularly throughout the day and watch for signs of burning.
Most people don't think about staying hydrated when they've been playing in the water all day. Be sure to pack plenty of drinking water and remind passengers that the beating sun and whipping wind can dehydrate them much faster than in typical conditions.
Now that you're ready for a water tubing adventure on the lake, the only thing left to do is to find your next Bennington Pontoon Boat at a dealer near you. Start designing your dream Bennington Pontoon Boat today with our online design center, here you can customize every feature for the perfect water tubing pontoon boating experience.