Boating - Safety Tips

Boating - Courtesy of Take Me Fishing

August 14, 2017 - Labor Day holiday weekend

The Labor Day holiday weekend is rapidly approaching. To a lot of boaters, this ends the summer on the water. Many will take this time to celebrate and enjoy South Carolina's waters. Unfortunately, many boaters will also mix alcohol and boating. While consuming alcohol on the water is legal, South Carolina law prohibits anyone from operating a moving motorized vessel or vessel under sail on the waters of the state while under the influence of alcohol, drugs or combination thereof.

There are tough fines, jail time and boating suspensions for anyone that violates this law. Alcohol was the primary cause of 8 boating accidents in South Carolina last year. This resulted in 3 fatalities. All of these could have been prevented. Let's all work together to keep the waters safe. If you must drink, please have a designated driver. Be safe, boat sober.


May 19, 2017 - Life Jacket Requirements

The Memorial Day holiday kicks off the boating season in South Carolina. With nearly 500,000 registered motorboats in the state, many people will take to our lakes and rivers for a weekend of fun and relaxation. Unfortunately, for some, the weekend could end in tragedy.

Last year, 23 people died on South Carolina's waters in boating-related accidents. In 91 percent of these accidents, drowning was the cause of death. While wearing a personal flotation device will not prevent a boating accident, it will give you a much better chance of surviving if you end up in the water.

All vessels are required to have at least one Type I, II, III, or V PFD (personal flotation device) that is U.S. Coast Guard-approved, wearable and of the proper size for each person aboard or being towed. All children under 12 years of age are required to wear a U.S. Coast Guard-approved Type I, II, III, or V PFD while aboard a Class A (less than 16 feet long) vessel. Each person riding on a PWC must wear a U.S. Coast Guard-approved Type I ,II, III, or V PFD.

PFDs can save lives, but only if you use them.

Let's all do our part to keep our waterways safe this summer! Find out more about these and other safety rules by taking a free boater education course.

Find our course listings at http://www.dnr.sc.gov/education/boated.html or by calling 800-277-4301.