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Boating safety tips to follow for the Labor Day holiday

The end of summer is quickly approaching and there will be one final weekend to enjoy time with family and friends before the hustle and bustle of the school year takes over our lives. That would be Labor Day weekend and it is right around the corner. If you plan to spend the weekend on the water, here are some boating safety tips to follow.

Plan your day on the water based on the forecast. If it's only going to rain for a little bit, you should not have to change your plans. If there are weather warnings for thunderstorms, high winds or high swell, you might want to consider staying on land for the holiday weekend.

Every person who goes out on your watercraft is required to have a life jacket. They don't have to wear the jacket while the watercraft is in motion but must be able to show it if boarded by the Coast Guard or the local police.

Have a ship-to-shore radio installed on the boat or a portable one. If it is portable, make sure that the radio's battery is completely charged prior to your adventure and that there is a backup battery also charged.

You should never go out alone, even if it is on a personal watercraft. Boating and any other adventure on the water, even kayaking, should be done with someone else who can contact the authorities if something goes wrong.

Boating accidents are some of the most tragic accidents in Michigan. Victims of these accidents find themselves with broken bones, burns, concussions and even traumatic brain injuries. Make sure you are prepared before spending a day on the water this coming holiday weekend.

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