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Aaron Gross

Colonel Aaron Gross

Director, Massachusetts Environmental Police

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With the summer season in full swing, I want to take the time to refresh your memory on boating and water safety. While you’re out enjoying our coastal and inland waters, I want to encourage you to engage in activities such as boating and swimming in a safe and responsible way. 

Here are some boating safety reminders:

  • Always check local weather conditions before you leave on a boating trip.  While you’re out on the water, if you notice the clouds getting darker or a sudden drop in temperature, start heading back to land.
  • Operate the boat at safe speeds at all time, especially in crowded areas.  Remain alert and avoid large vessels and watercraft that have restricted ability to stop or turn. 
  • Make sure more than one person on board is familiar with all aspects of your boat’s handling, operations, and other boating safety tips.
  • Always be sure to have a float plan—letting someone know where you’re going and how long you plan to be gone for.
  • Make sure there are enough lifejackets onboard for each person accompanying you out on the water.  
  • Take a boating safety course to learn more about how to stay safe on the water!

Swim safety reminders:

  • Swim in areas with lifeguard supervision.
  • Always swim with a buddy.
  • Have young children or inexperienced swimmers wear U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jackets around water.
  • Be knowledgeable of the water environment you are in and its potential hazards, such as deep and shallow areas, currents, depth charges, obstructions and where the entry and exit points are located.
  • Use a feet-first entry when entering the water.

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