Common Boating Mistakes

17 June 2021

While almost all boating mistakes can and should be avoided, even the most experienced skippers slip up every now and then.

Some boating mistakes can make for a rather entertaining show, some even caught on camera – known as boating fails. (YouTube provides a thoroughly hilarious range of videos), while others are a “oooooopppps”.

Knowing your boat will certainly help to avoid such whoopsies.

A few common mistakes are:

  • Not wearing a life jacket – Great boating is safe boating. Wear a jacket!
  • Running out of fuel – this one is a biggie and very embarrassing. It’s a far better idea to carry a reserve of fuel than be caught in nowhere sea, waving a flag.
  • Forgetting to put the bung back in – unfortunately this one is far too common. Removing the bung to drain out water in your boat is a must, but even more of a must is being sure to pop it back in. A minimal amount water in your boat for draining after your adventure, or an ocean and all it’s creatures inside your boat…. PUT THE BUNG BACK IN!
  • Hitting the river or seabed (Running aground) – this could end in disaster for your hull if this happens on a rocky seabed. Be prepared, have a depth finder installed, be aware of where you are and what the hazards of the waters are.
  • Not putting enough line in the water when anchoring – imagine going back to your boat after diving, only to find it’s either moved, or gone completely (how awkward….). REMEMBER the amount of line needed is 5 times the depth of the water in calm waters and 10 times the amount in rough conditions.
  • Getting lost at night – all is well when the sun is up, but how is your night vision in pitch blackness? (sadly, you are not an eagle). The best solution for this is to invest in a Navigation system (simrad or the like), installing navigation lights to each side of your boat and installing a pilot light to the top of your boat.

With some care and common sense, all the above can be easily eradicated, save some embarrassment and awkwardness. Be a safe, smart boater.