Be a Nice Boater
5/17/2013 9:18 AM
Don’t be that guy.
You know the one. He (or she) ticks off everyone in line to use a boat ramp by skipping in line, using more space than needed and being unpleasant to be around.
During the summer, some of our Boating Access Areas (We’re looking at you, Wrightsville Beach and Cross Point Landing) can become awfully busy. It’s hot. It’s crowded. And folks just want to get on the water.
We’ve rounded up a few tips to make the boating experience pleasant for everyone.
Pre-Launch at Home
· File a float plan with a responsible person.
· Make sure you have all required safety equipment on board.
· Check the charge on fire extinguisher(s).
· Check that your registration anddecal are up-to-date and your registration card is on board.
· Make sure all running gear, lights,etc., are working and the drain plug is in.
Pre-Launch at Staging Area
· Remove covers and straps before you get in line.
· Have gear and equipment already stowed on board.
· Disconnect any wiring between your trailer and boat.
· Remove the tarp and straps that secure your boat to the trailer.
· Put your keys in the boat console.
· Wait your turn. Get in line without blocking or cutting off others.
· Connect your bow line.
· Ease your boat into the water and watch for the dock or pier and other boats.
· If possible, park your vehicle and trailer while someone moves the boat away from the ramp.
· Observe no-wake zones and be cautious.
· Loading onto trailers is in order of tow vehicles in line, not waiting boats.
· Carefully back trailer into the water.
· Move the boat onto the trailer, hook the winch line and securely position.
· Steadily accelerate and slowly pull the trailer forward; watch for other vehicles and people.
· Return to the staging area to transfer gear, secure straps and tarps.
For additional information, download our Vessel Operator’s Guide. For maps and information on the more than 200 free boating access areas in North Carolina, visit http://www.ncwildlife.org/Boating/WheretoBoat.aspx.