National Safe Boating Week kicks off Saturday

CLEVELAND, Ohio – The annual National Safe Boating Week safety campaign kicks off Saturday, and Coast Guard units and Auxiliary flotillas all across the Great Lakes are planning to host events and highlight the importance of boating safety throughout the week leading up to Memorial Day weekend.

Saturday is also the Ready, Set, Wear It! Life Jacket World Record Day, when thousands of people from around the world will attempt to set the world record for the most life jackets worn and inflatable life jackets inflated on one day in an effort to raise awareness about the importance of wearing a life jacket.

A list of Ready, Set, Wear It! events, divided by U.S. states, is available here.

“Much like wearing a seatbelt, putting on a lifejacket during or after an accident happens is too late,” said Mike Baron, the recreational boating safety specialist for the Ninth Coast Guard District. “That’s why we recommend that people wear their lifejackets while on the water.”

Although 2016 U.S. Coast Guard statistics have not been released yet, in 2015 drowning was the reported cause of death in three-fourths of recreational boating fatalities, and 85 percent of those who drowned were not wearing life jackets.

For this year’s National Safe Boating Week campaign, the Great Lakes Coast Guard will focus on three aspects of boating safety: vessel operator responsibilities, paddlesport safety, and the importance of communication before, during and after on-water recreational activities.

The following is a list of scheduled events and open houses coinciding with National Safe Boating Week:

Location  Hosting Unit Event Date/Time
Station Calumet Harbor
4001 East 98th Street, Chicago, Illinois 60617
Station Calumet Harbor Open house Saturday, May 20 from noon to 4 p.m.
Station Wilmette Harbor
10 Harbor Drive, Wilmette, Illinois 60091
Station Wilmette Harbor Open house and tours Saturday, May 20 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Station Michigan City
10 On The Lake, Michigan City, Indiana 46360
Station Michigan City Open house, tours, Coast Guard Auxiliary displays, and activities Saturday, May 20 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Grand Haven Waterfront Stadium, 1 North Harbor Drive, Grand Haven, MI 49417 Station Grand Haven Meet and greet Tuesday, May 23 from 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.
Station Saginaw River
2405 Weadock Highway, Essexville, Michigan 48732
Station Saginaw River and
Aids to Navigation Team Saginaw River
Open house and vessel safety checks Saturday, May 20 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Huron Boat Basin
330 Main Street, Huron, Ohio 44839
Station Marblehead Huron Water Safety Day Thursday, May 25 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Station Sheboygan
209 Pennsylvania Avenue, Sheboygan, Wisconsin 53081
Station Sheboygan Open house Sunday, May 21 from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m.

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