By Mel Beasley
The New Hanover County Sheriff’s Office will launch its first annual Boater’s Safety Day this Saturday, an event that will teach boaters of any experience level things such as prep lane procedures, trailer backing techniques and boat ramp etiquette, according to officials.
“A lot of people buy boats but may not know how to prepare or launch that boat properly. Also, some may have spouses who are eager to learn boating practices, so this class will provide the information necessary to safely enter and exit the water,” said Lt. Jerry Brewer said, New Hanover County Sheriff’s Office public information officer.
The location of the event can only accommodate 30 vehicles, so officials are asking that participants carpool if possible to save space. The event is located at the NC Wildlife Ramp, 109 Causeway Drive Wrightsville Beach, NC 28480. The event will take place on Feb. 24, 2018 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Those interested in participating can register by calling 910-798-4228.
In May 2017, a Carolina Skiff boat accelerating on a ramp, sending it into the air and on top of other nearby boats at the Bridge Tender Marina. Other more serious accidents were also reported last year in neighboring marinas, with boats either crashing into docks on their way inland or while out on the water.
It is easy to become distracted while preparing to set out on the water, Brewer said, and there have been instances in North Carolina of vehicles sinking in the water from boaters forgetting to put them in park, for example.
“There are tons of different things that can occur like you can sink your boat,” Brewer said.
To help minimize such accidents or mishaps, The New Hanover County Sheriff’s Office, in conjunction with Wilmington Police Department, NC Wildlife and USCG Station Wrightsville Beach, will host its first annual Boater’s Safety Day.
The Marine Unit of the Wrightsville Beach Sheriff’s Office will instruct the event on the following topics:
· Preparing your boat in the prep lane.
· Backing your trailer down the boat ramp.
· Launching and recovering your vessel.
· Preparing your boat for the trip home.
· Boat ramp etiquette
MarineMax hosts classes to promote boating safety
MarineMax Wrightsville Beach is set to host an array of classes including, Intro to Boating, Boating Safety and Women on Water, all to promote safe boating practices.
“We are proud to provide a variety of classes in order to educate boaters on the best and safest way to enjoy the water,” Tyler Layton, MarineMax General Manager.
On February 24 and June 9, 9:00am – 12:30pm, ladies take the helm during Women on Water. This is a unique hands-on class designed just for women. With two portions, in the classroom and on the water, attendees have an opportunity to learn and practice how to tie proper knots, rules of the water, how to dock the boat safely, boat operation, boat handling, and much more.
March 10, 10:00am – 12:30pm, beginning boaters or those looking to get a refresher can take advantage of the Intro to Boating Class. This is a great course to review the basics in order to feel comfortable and confident behind the helm.
April 7, 9am – 5pm, MarineMax partners with the US Coast Guard Auxiliary to present the Boating Safety Course. This course is ideal for those seeking a complete boating and safety course. It will give participants the knowledge needed to obtain a boat license or safety certificate. Topics include an introduction to boating, boating law, boat safety equipment, safe boating, navigation, boating problems, trailering, storing, and protecting your boat, hunting, fishing, water skiing, and river boating.
“Our classes fill up quickly! We encourage you to register early,” continued Layton.
To learn more about the classes at MarineMax Wrightsville Beach call (910) 256-8100 or visit http://bit.ly/2BwfmGM
Cape Fear Sail & Power sets boating course
The Cape Fear Sail and Power Squadron’s will hold its America’s Boating Course Feb. 24-25. The course is one day of classroom instruction followed by a private four-hour on-the-water teaching cruise in partnership with Wilmington Water Tours.
The classroom instruction is fast paced and fun and will be held on Feb. 24 at Cape Fear Community College and addresses basic navigation, rules of the road, docking, trailering, anchoring, radio communications, safety gear and more.
Then, on Feb. 25, students will take a cruise down the Cape Fear River into the Intracoastal Waterway and back where dolphins and freighters are often spotted. The cruise enhances topics covered in class and adds discussions on chart reading, tides, currents, and weather.
Certified instructors with years of boating experience and local knowledge teach the course. In addition, the class satisfies the North Carolina boating education requirements enacted in 2010.
For more information and to enroll, visit http://weteachboating.org.