Coast Guard to patrol during Chincoteague Pony Swim

CHINCOTEAGUE, Va. – Coast Guard Station Chincoteague boat crewmembers will assist the Chincoteague Volunteer Fire Department in establishing a security zone during the 85th Annual Chincoteague Pony Swim, July 28.

The Coast Guard is urging that all pony swim spectators practice safe boating while on the water and obey all posted signs and patrol crafts throughout the event.

It is always safe practice to wear your life jacket. According to safetboatingcampaign.com, the majority of boating fatalities occur from drowning; more than half of those that drown were not wearing a life jacket at the time of the accident. Boat operators should also always ensure that everyone on board has a life jacket that is Coast Guard approved and is the correct size for the intended individual.

Information regarding the event can be obtained from the Local Notice to Mariners and the Marine Safety Broadcast which can be heard on VHF channel 16 the morning of the event.

Other good safe boating practices to observe are:

  • Take a boating safety course: Safe boating courses are a good idea for all to take no matter what your experience level may be.
  • File a float plan: This is easily completed by telling someone where you are going and when you plan on returning.
  • Don’t drink and boat: The consumption of alcoholic beverages should be conducted responsibly. Boating under the influence is a violation of state and federal laws, and one can incur large fines or even jail time.
  • Have the proper equipment: Ensure that your vessel has all the required items on board as required by federal law, and they are in serviceable condition.

For further boating safety information, check online at one of the following:

Safe boating website: http://www.safeboatingcampaign.com/

U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary: http://www.cgaux.org/

Vessel Safety Checks: http://www.vesselsafetycheck.org/

U.S. Coast Guard Boating Safety page: http://www.uscgboating.org/

National Safe Boating Council: http://www.safeboatingcouncil.org/

U.S. Power Squadrons: http://www.usps.org/

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