What are the Must-Have Accessories for your Boat?
So you’ve just bought your first boat and are about to take it out on the water for the first time. This is probably among the most exciting moments of your life, and you should be proud of the accomplishment. You deserve it! But first, you must make sure to have the standard boating accessories beforehand. Keep in mind that different states may have slightly different specific requirements, but for all intents and purposes no matter where you take your boat in the US there are laws that require basic safety equipment on your boat. Depending on which state you’re in there may be Park Rangers or Fish and Wildlife Agents, or other local authorities that will enforce these laws. With that in mind, these are the most important must-have accessories for your new boat:
You must bring life jackets and you should have at least one for each person that is going to be on the boat. If there are two people, you need two life jackets. If there are five, then you need five. It’s really that simple. Children under the age of 13 years should have their life jackets on at all times. Additionally, you should bring at least one throwable flotation device, like a ring buoy. You can use this to pull a person closer and help them back into the boat.
It’s also important to bring visual signaling devices like flares or a strobe light for nighttime, and a large bright colored flag for daytime use. In case of being stranded during heavy fog, a horn or whistle should be available. Also, bring at least two heavy duty flashlights. You really don’t want to be stranded in the middle of a large body of water in pitch darkness. That’s not going to be a fun time.
Other Safety Equipment
Fire Extinguishers: Bring at least two fire extinguishers in case one fails or falls out of the boat. Make sure everyone on the boat knows how to use one.
First Aid Kit: For minor injuries like cuts and scrapes. Include Dramamine for seasickness, and painkillers like Acetaminophen. Seriously injured people should be taken to the hospital.
Snorkel Mask: To inspect the underside of your boat, a snorkel mask will be extremely helpful.
Oars and Paddles: If the engine quits having these will be very helpful to get back to land.
Dry Storage Boxes: These are thick containers with heavy-duty latches and water-tight seals, so you can keep in it anything you don’t want to get wet (like your cell phone).
Marine Depth-finders: Use these to find out how deep the water is. This is important to make sure that your boat doesn’t get damaged underneath by scraping on rocks.
Boat Fenders: Your boat probably came with a couple, but you don’t lose anything by getting a couple extra. These will help to protect your boat from damage while docked.
If you need any more advice on the must-have equipment for your boat, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us for more advice!