Running a high performance bass boat is a fun way to cover water effectively in a short period of time. However, in order to enjoy your high performance machine there are a couple of safety pieces that you need in your boat just in case a situation occurs where you may need it. Life Jackets are the most important necessity to have in the boat. Whether it’s a foam jacket or a Automatic PFD, a life jacket could save your live if you get thrown out, if the boat sinks or for any reason where you have to get into the water. A life jacket will keep you head up and out of the water so you can work on trying to get to safety.
Signal flares are the 2nd most important item that’s a must. You may not fish the great lakes like I do but if your boat breaks down for any reason you can signal some help that can be seen for miles. Flares are normally good for about 3 years so you need to check your expiration dates on your flares to make sure they are not expired, and keep them in your watertight compartment “their no good if they’re wet “.
A Fire Extinguisher is another essential in a bass boat; with all the electrical and engine components that a bass boat has, you never know when you can have a fuse breaker catch fire. You need to be able to put out the fire. Make sure you have a marine grade extinguisher (those can be used on gasoline and electrical components) and space in one of your compartments to mount it. Check the life of your extinguisher as well, when it goes bad replace it ASAP.
An empty coffee can to manually bail water, now this one is special. Now my Ranger has 2 1000gph bilge pumps with both auto and manual bilge settings, but if the bilge pump system goes out and you’re taking on water you need to bail out water until help arrives. That’s why I keep an empty coffee can in my boat just in case.
Some other safety items you should have on your bass boat, or any boat for that matter, are the following:
- A hailing device, such as a whistle or horn, that’s not the boat’s horn.
- Anchor and anchor line.
- A working “Kill Switch”. If you fall out of the boat you definitely want that boat to stop moving to avoid an accident.
- Navigation lights for low light and night conditions.
- Of course, a First Aid Kit.
The best safety tip is to check over everything on a regular basis. From the battery connections to your jack-plate mounting bolts. Make a habit of regularly check over everything and make sure everything is clean and neat that will take the risk of anything bad happening down dramatically plus if something does happen you can get to what you need quickly. Also, check your state’s website on boating safety and regulations. There may be requirements that you should know about before going out on the water. Use these tips and your boating experience will be very enjoyable!!!