Canoeing is a wonderful way to spend time with your family and friends. However, if you don’t take the proper precautions, you could end up in a life-threatening situation. You probably already have some of these safety items lying around your house, so you won’t have to invest money to prevent yourself from danger. If you can’t find all 10 of these items, at least make sure you have the most important ones!
1. Life Jacket
A life jacket is a must when it comes to canoeing safety. Even if you’re an experienced and strong swimmer, there’s always a chance that there could be waves that push you out of your boat. If you don’t have a life jacket, the water will be too strong for you to stay afloat. When going out in your boat, it’s best to have a life vest for each person with them just in case something happens.
2. Extra Paddles
When you’re canoeing in a bigger group, it’s always a good idea to have a spare paddle in case someone drops one of them overboard. While there are a few ways you can get the paddles back if they fall off, it’s much easier and safer just to have two or more.
3. Canoeing Flag
You don’t want to be an obstruction on the water when you’re canoeing, so it’s best to have a bright and noticeable flag on your boat. This is great for preventing collisions with other boats as well as letting those in the water know where you’re located at all times.
4. Distress Signal
If you do find yourself in trouble on the water and can’t get back to safety with your canoe and other supplies, it’s best to have a distress signal handy. Since flares and other items that glow stand out very well at night, they’re perfect distress signals for those who might be looking for you during the day or night.
5. First Aid Kit
Even if you don’t know how to swim or are uncomfortable in the water, you should always have a first aid kit with you on your canoe. You never know when someone could slip and fall, cut themselves on the boat, or get a bug bite that causes an allergic reaction. A small first-aid kit can make all the difference in a life or death situation.
6. Communication Device
While most of us don’t typically think of emergency communication devices, they’re actually almost as important as your life vest. If you get yourself into trouble and can’t find help for whatever reason, it’s best to have a small radio with you on the boat. This way, you will always be able to call for help if necessary.
Even if you’re near water, that doesn’t mean you won’t get burned. Sunscreen should be worn by everyone on the boat to avoid any untoward health effects during your canoeing excursion. The sun can damage your skin very quickly, even if it’s cloudy outside, so always make sure you’re taking proper precautions to avoid burning.
8. Food and Water
Last but not least, make sure you have food and water with you. This should be enough to last you for at least a few hours if necessary. These can come in handy should an emergency arise where you need to wait for help or do other things while afloat. Keeping yourself hydrated and nourished during emergencies is always the best way to stay at your best.
9. First Aid Training
You should always have a first aid kit on hand in case something happens during canoeing, but it’s important to have proper training in CPR and other life-saving techniques. You never know when you could find yourself needing to use these skills in order to save the life of a friend, family member, or stranger.
10. Navigation Tools
Last but not least, make sure you have the right tools for navigation purposes. You should always know where you’re going and how to get there when canoeing in an area that you’re not familiar with. Having navigational tools will help keep everyone safe from harm when out in the water.
There are many things you have to consider when canoeing, so it’s always best to be prepared with the right tools. You never know when an emergency could happen or when something might go wrong on your trip. Taking time to prepare is always worthwhile.