Oswego, NY – May 21 to May 27, 2011 is National Safe Boating Week. Across the U.S. boating trade associations, police agencies, marina operators, and organizations such as the US Coast Guard, Power Squadrons, and New York Sea Grant are reminding people how to be safe as they enjoy boating on New York’s Great Lakes and other waters.
“This week marks the official kickoff to the 2011 edition of New York’s Discover Clean & Safe Boating education campaign. Heading into Memorial Day Weekend is a great time to review safety procedures and check boats for life jackets and all the gear required and recommended to be legal and safe on New York waters,” says New York Sea Grant Recreation and Tourism Specialist Dave White.
And White means checking both motorized and non-motorized boats.
“This year we invite canoers and kayakers to join motorized boaters to learn about good practices at our Discover Clean & Safe Boats traveling exhibit with both a 16-foot fishing vessel and a 12-foot canoe,” White says.
The two “made in New York” vessels carry equipment identified as to what it is and how it should be used. The fishing boat, with a 50hp Yamaha engine from Clayton Marina, has such environmentally-friendly items as an oil-absorbent bilge sock and a fuel nozzle bib.
An added focus of the 2011 Discover Clean & Safe Boating campaign is helping boaters understand why and how they slow the spread of aquatic invasive species using easy-to-implement clean boating practices.
White says, “People generally rinse off boats and trailers, but we need to be cleaning off everything that comes in contact with the water, from anchors and bait nets to fishing poles, fins and beach booties. Look closely at gear with nooks and crannies such as the lip of a kayak that can catch species such as zebra mussels and weeds.”
New York Sea Grant is taking the two educational exhibit boats to events and sites throughout New York State in partnership with the Boating Industries Association of Upstate NY and Marathon Boat Group. Morgan Recreational Supply and TaylorMade Products have provided equipment for the exhibit.
National Stop Aquatic Hitchhikers information will be available at the exhibit of the two boats along with a prize wheel and the opportunity to sign a Clean and Safe Boating New York Pledge.
White recently received an award from the BoatUS Foundation recognizing the creation of this consumer education campaign. For more information on the 2011 Discover Clean & Safe Boating campaign, contact Dave White at New York Sea Grant, Oswego, NY, 315-312-3042, www.nyseagrant.org , http://facebook.com/nyseagrant, and http://twitter.com/nyseagrant. #