Louisiana set a record for the lowest number of boating deaths in a year in 2013, experiencing only 13 total. Considering that the state has had an average of 25 boating deaths per year since 2010, this is a remarkable achievement.
The Associated Press reports that the previous low was 19, set in 1992. The all-time high is 79 in 1974.
The data, which was provided by the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries' Enforcement Division's Boating Safety Program, is good news for the boating industry in the Bayou State, given the thousands of citizens who pilot boats on a daily basis. The Department is crediting the improved safety conditions to mandatory boat education courses that are required for anyone born after January 1, 1984.
In order to continue this trend of improved safety, it's important for boaters to avail themselves of communications and navigation technology that makes it much easier to identify nearby vessels and avoid collisions. Some of the equipment that every boater should have on board before they leave the dock includes:
- Marine VHF: In order to communicate with emergency personnel on land, it's important for boaters to have a marine radio that puts out a strong signal. Cell phones are often inadequate, particularly when you're on a large body of water.
- Transducers: Avoiding collisions with underwater obstacles is much easier if you have a transducer that can provide accurate readings of the surface underneath your boat.
If you're looking to add these items to your equipment inventory, or you need to replace the ones you have, your best source for marine equipment is ePal!