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Staying Safe on Memorial Day Weekend

Staying Safe on Memorial Day Weekend

On Memorial Day Weekend, everyone has the same idea as you — let's head to the lake! That means that for three days, your idyllic hideaway looks like Walmart on Black Friday.

Basically, you can expect big crowds.

The thing with big crowds is that they're full of human beings, and human beings share one universal commonality — they all love pontoon boats. That means you're going to have a whole bunch of new best friends and everyone in the crowd is going to want to come aboard.

You, being the awesome human being that you are, are going to want to accommodate them all. The problem is, your boat's maximum capacity doesn't increase just because it's a holiday.

In short, Memorial Day Weekend gives you lots of opportunities to overload your boat. Resist the urge to say "one more couldn't hurt."

Next, watch your speed. Excessive speed causes more accidents than anything else on the water, even when crowds aren't at their peak. On Memorial Day Weekend, there are more boats. More boats equals more things to crash into.

Finally, we come to booze. Don't drink and boat. It’s illegal. It's dangerous. Its stupid. It's irresponsible. What else is there to say?

Please keep in mind that just because you're doing the right thing, you can't assume that all the other captains on the sea are following your example. Assume that other boats zigging and zagging past, pontoon or otherwise, are piloted by folks who think the rules don’t apply to them. Be on guard!

So that's it. Be safe on Memorial Day Weekend. Use common sense and exercise good judgment. These are pretty good rules of thumb to follow on a boat no matter the day, but on holidays, surviving the three-day weekend with your body, boat and family intact is a special kind of mission.

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  • Amy Cabanas