National Safe Boating Week Under Way

On average, 700 people die in boating-related accidents annually in the United States, and eight of every 10 victims weren't wearing a life jacket.

"Ready, Set, Wear It!" events statewide in Ohio are part of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources' observance of National Safe Boating Week, taking place May 20-26 as a way to raise life jacket safety awareness. "Don't just have your life jacket close by when you are boating, wear it," stressed Mike Bailey, chief of the ODNR Division of Parks and Watercraft. "If an accident occurs and you suddenly end up overboard, a life jacket will keep your head above water and could save your life."

The eighth annual "Ready, Set, Wear It!" Life Jacket World Record Day was held May 20, as the department hosted nine events at state parks in Columbus, Toledo, and elswhere.

The National Safe Boating Council and the Canadian Safe Boating Council also participated in awareness events on May 20. Last year, more than 6,700 people gathered at more than 210 events held around the world, including Ohio, setting a new record for attendance, with the National Safe Boating Council reporting that Ohio had the third-highest participation rate at a single event in the country.

On average, 700 people die in boating-related accidents annually in the United States, and eight of every 10 victims weren't wearing a life jacket. The National Safe Boating Council works in partnership with the U.S. Coast Guard and the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators to reach more than 70 million boaters in North America with the life-saving message.

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