Checklist for EPIRB and Other Essential Safety Equipment

Owning a boat now is not a luxury, but a need. When you go boating, it rejuvenates the mind, brings you closer to family, and you become one with nature. But regardless of size and country, all boats should have the proper equipment depending on their use. So, whether you use it for fishing, diving, day-cruising, or water racing, it is essential to have an EPIRB and other boating gear for safe travels.

If you are a new boat owner, you may be wondering what essentials you may need to put in your beloved dinghy. To start you off, here is a short checklist of vital boat-paraphernalia before you sail off into the unknown.

EPIRB and PLB (Personal Locator Beacon)

Emergencies happen, so prepare yourself. An EPIRB (also known as an Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon) and a personal locator beacon (or PLB) are two mechanisms that send a heads-up to search and rescue services if you are in danger and need of assistance. The difference is an EPIRB is installed on your boat, while you can bring the PLB wherever you go. 

Wearable Flotation Devices

Do you know how to swim? You should. But in case you do not, and you decide to go on a boat, find out where the wearable flotation devices are. These are lifejackets and buoyancy vests that you wear to keep your head afloat so you will not drown.

Anchor with Cable or Chain

When you have found a suitable spot for your boat, it is best to anchor yourself to the place. To do this, you will need a metal anchor connected to either cable or chain to bring your vessel a bit of stability.

Fire Extinguisher

You may be on the water, but that does not exclude you from occurrences of small fires. It could be due to cooking, an overheated engine, or a wayward flare. Make sure to have a fire extinguisher on hand for those unexpected blazes.

Sound and Visual Signaling Devices

Weather disturbances are common, especially where there is water. The incidences of heavy rain and thick fog are no exception. If this happens, there may be reduced visibility on the water, and it may cause the vehicle to collide with another who cannot see you as well. To prevent that, have air horns, whistles, gongs, or bells on board, so you can make noises whenever needed. You can also use visual signaling devices such as flares so other boats or rescuers can see you.

Medical Kit

As with any journey, a first-aid kit is necessary. There should be plasters, scissors, alcohol-free cleansing swabs, painkillers, anti-allergy medicine, eye dressings, tweezers, and antiseptic for both big or small cuts and mishaps.

Heavy-Duty Flashlight

Going overnight boating is fun and exciting. But the mood shifts when the lights go out unexpectedly. When they do, it would be best if you have several heavy-duty flashlights on hand to prevent unforeseen bumps and stubbed toes. 

Oars and Paddles

You should leave no stone unturned when thinking of troublesome possibilities. While it is highly unlikely for an engine to fail, wouldn’t you like to be all set in the eventuality? Use oars and paddles for rowing your boat to safety, or at least until some help comes along. 

You would want any outing to be smooth sailing and enjoyable. Any untoward incident may mar the whole trip altogether. So for those small misadventures, it is best to come prepared by having a fully stocked and wholly safe boat that everyone can appreciate.

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