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Thread: Boat Safety Tips For Waterfowl Season

  1. #1
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    Default Boat Safety Tips For Waterfowl Season

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    That great time of the year is once again upon us - Waterfowl Season!!!
    I am just as excited as the next person with the anticipation to get out on the lake and start watching birds work in over the decoys, but I find that sometimes we forget some of the basic safety concerns due to our excitement.
    As we are just shy of the season and boat prep has likely begun - I thought I'd take a few moments to talk about some safety equipment and practices I utilize to ensure a safe waterfowl season:

    Basic Things to have on the boat:

    - Navigation lights - Make sure they all work
    - Boat Safety Bucket - the $12 safety "must legally have" in any boat that doubles as a bailing pail if the need arises
    - Spare battery/battery starter - you can get one at CT for a fair price - this can also jump your truck if you left the doors open during your hunt
    - 50ft of good quality marine rope. You need a tow? or need to tow someone? Have this.
    - Oars or Paddles - Motors fail. Always have the ability to row yourself to safety.
    - Life Jackets - and actually wear them on the way to the blind and back to the ramp
    - A Robust First Aid Kit + Tourniquet - Make sure it has a rescue blanket, and trauma kit as this is hunting. Things can go bad quickly. Be prepared for the worst - Use a few ziplock bags to make it waterproof.
    - Tool Kit - Things break, motors fail, guns jam... Have a basic tool kit that can allow you to possibility to field-fix a problem.
    - A safety timing/Safety message - Tell someone when you plan to be off the water. Text them when you make it back to the ramp. Tell them where you will be hunting in case 911 has to be activated. Establish a safety plan. This is possibly one of the best "safety-oriented" ideas you can employ when hunting.
    Also - don't forget an anchor...

    Advanced Things to have in the boat:

    - GPS - Your fish-finder can also double as this to avoid getting lost in the dark hours on route to the blind.
    - SPOT - I've used a SPOT for years now. It is a small price to pay for safety - plus you can send messages to your safety person when you've concluded your hunt and are on route home. Worth every penny.
    - Dry Box - This can hold emergency food, water, spare clothes, spare gloves, extra safety gear, spare box of shells if someone forgets ammo...
    - Duct Tape - If something moves, and it's not supposed to...
    - WD-40 - If something doesn't move, and it's supposed to...
    - Marine Horn and Safety Whistle
    - 12g Flares x 3 - or Fireworks - They both bring attention and will likely get the OPP called to your location.
    - Lighter/Matches
    - A stick of marine epoxy

    This isn't the entire list of things that you can incorporate into your boat for waterfowl season. It's simply some of the things I personally do to ensure a safe trip to and from the blind. As another personal safety point - I have an agreement with my wife and hunting partners that I am not allowed to hunt solo after Halloween. This puts her at ease in case something happens and I fall in the water when it gets cold -- I'll have a second person there to help me out.

    The biggest point if you don't want to go crazy with all the aforementioned safety stuff - have a safety plan with someone. Tell them where you are going exactly (Google Maps), what time you will be back to the ramp, how you will contact them, when to call 911 if they can't reach you by the established "safe time."

    I wish you all a great waterfowl season - I'm not likely to join you this season due to being out of the country for work.

    Be safe, get the birds in close, have a good season.

    B.
    Support your Troops. They support you.

    Brandon MacDonald

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  3. #2
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    Thanks for your timely reminder before the season.

    I would also add that for those going on open water, especially later in the season, wear a floater coat or suit to protect against hypothermia in case you get dunked.

  4. #3
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    Great helpful post and reminder...that no one can argue about..lol
    Mark Snow, Libertarian Nepean, for 2019, Chairman - Ontario Libertarian Party

  5. #4
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    You forgot the #1 MOST IMPORTANT THING!


    COMMON SENSE!!

    S.

  6. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sinker View Post
    You forgot the #1 MOST IMPORTANT THING!


    COMMON SENSE!!

    S.
    Yes most definitely, it seems to be lacking in a lot of cases where mishaps occur!
    Last edited by jaycee; August 29th, 2018 at 02:36 PM.

  7. #6
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    shameless bump for a refresher - good luck tomorrow everyone! Be safe!
    Support your Troops. They support you.

    Brandon MacDonald

  8. #7
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    Ok this may sound like I am an A-hole, but let your hunting partner(s) know things.
    You get low blood sugar.
    Your Night blind.
    You have vertigo/bad balance.

    ( now the A-hole part).

    If you can't swim DON'T get in the stupid boat. The standard "I will just keep my life jacket on." Does not cut it. Wearing a life jacket on a boat in the summer because you can't swim is not a problem if you go in the water. Going in the cold water in the middle of a duck hunt is likely to put you and your buddy(ies) in serious danger.
    Sic Gorgia Mus Allos Subjectatos Nunc.

  9. #8
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    great tips

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