setting out, inform someone of your location and intended time of return.
- Avoid wearing waders in a boat.
not overload a boat with tackle or people.
wear a life jacket when afloat - a buoyancy aid may not be enough to save your
life in an extreme emergency.
- Always check the weather
forecast before setting out. If the weather is forecast to deteriorate it will.
- Never venture out in a boat if the weather conditions are
not favourable. Do not take chances.
- Always have
some form of back-up power available - even if this is only a set of oars.
- Never speed in your boat, especially in unfamiliar areas.
On some waters levels are so variable that areas that are safe one day are dangerous
- Ensure that the anchor you use is capable
of keeping you in position in even the roughest of weather. Sometimes it is safer
to sit out a passing storm at anchor than try to run for shelter. Remember that
it is too rough when it is impossible for you to fish effectively not when the
waves are breaking over the gunwales.
- Make sure
the anchor rope is long enough to enable you to fish your chosen swim safely.
For example, twice the depth of your chosen swim on your bow anchor.
ensure that knots tied to the anchor are strong and capable of withstanding the
forces require to remove a stuck anchor. If the anchor rope snaps when you are
pulling hard on the rope you will end up over the side.
the anchor rope tidy so you don't trip over it.
sure the anchor rope cannot foul on you or anything else when lowering the anchor.
- Always be careful when retrieving the anchor rope while
the engine is running, if the rope catches on the propellor you could end up with
more than you bargain for so carry out this procedure with great care and never
when you are fishing alone.
- Never reach over the
side of a boat unless tied on to a fixture or held by a companion.
be aware of where your boat partner is and what he is doing. Take especial care
if moving position in the boat. Sudden, unexpected movements of one angler can
move the boat and easily unbalance the other angler causing him to fall.
- Check fuel level before setting out on a long run. If you
run out of petrol in open water then all other safety precautions are rendered
- Carry a change of clothing in the car.
Should you fall in or get soaked by the weather changing into dry clothing, especially
in winter, will make you feel a whole lot better.
- Even in fine weather you
can get wet from the spray thrown up as the boat ploughs through rough water.
You will need effective waterproof clothing - jacket and over trousers/bib and
brace, or one piece suit.
- It is always 'an overcoat
colder' fishing from a boat than from the bank. Wearing clothing that allows you
to add or remove layers as the weather changes is the best plan.
your spare clothing in a dry bag or box in the boat. Adding a layer of damp clothing
is not a good way to get warm.
- In summer carry and
use a good sunscreen. Not only will you be subjected to the direct rays of the
sun, but they will be reflected off the surface of the water too. Wear uv protecting
polarised sunglasses too.
In Case of Emergency
- If caught out in rough weather try and steer into the wind
and veer towards the nearest safe bank taking notice of your depth finder as rocks
can appear from nowhere.
- In case of engine failure
use the oars to keep the bow into the wind and drift down wind until you reach
- If all power is lost lie in the bottom of
the boat to lower the centre of gravity and drift to shore. If you have a drogue
attach it to the bow of the boat on the full length of cord.
From Hire Boats
- Fully acquaint yourself
with the operating instructions for the outboard BEFORE leaving the jetty.
- Watch out for hooks and flies stuck in the anchor ropes.
Wearing thick leather gloves is a good idea to protect your hands when raising
and lowering ropes.
- Take a large unhooking mat or
some other pike-friendly floor covering when fishing from hire boats.
taking your own anchors and ropes, especially if you want to bait fish and require
more information on a wider range of boat safety matters visit the British
Waterways website where there is a large selection of downloadable information.
The RNLI Also now offer a FREE CD-Rom and booklet devoted to Sea Safety, covering all aspects of Boat Safety and navigation. There is also extra literature available covering Life vests, engine maintenance, etc. To request a guide click HERE
here to download this page in Acrobat Reader
based on information provided by Chris Donovan.