Ocean City Today
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Nat’l Safe Boating Week events held in West OC, Sat.

By Kara Hallissey | May 18, 2017
There will be exhibits and activities on marine safety, ecology, environmental stewardship, fishing tips and regulations in addition to knot-tying demonstrations at the kick off to National Safe Boating Week, Saturday from 10 a.m. to noon at the West Ocean City public boat launch ramp at the Commercial Fishing Harbor. Auxiliarist Don Schafer demonstrates a Marlinspike knot.

(May 19, 2017) To kick off National Safe Boating Week, the United States Coast Guard Auxiliary will celebrate with free activities including tours of boats, demonstrations, educational booths and games for children at the West Ocean City public boat launch ramp at the Commercial Fishing Harbor, from 10 a.m. to noon on Saturday.

“We are promoting safe boating and educating the public,” said LTJG Zach Hall, USCG Ret., USCG Auxiliary Flotilla 12-5 Ocean City. “Boating is fun, but can be dangerous. Taking precautions make you well prepared and these essential safety tips should be at the forefront of everyone’s minds all summer long.”

The event will begin with a number of guest speakers including U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary District Commander Todd Monis. Del. Mary Beth Carozza will present a proclamation before talking about new legislation on bow-riding safety and Capt. Quincy Shockley from the National Resource Police will stress the importance of wearing a life jacket. A representative from the senator’s office will also be on hand.

All attendees are encouraged to wear a life jacket because 90 percent of people who drown in recreational boat accidents are not wearing one.

At 10:30 a.m., organizers will gather everyone wearing a life jacket together for a picture in hopes of beating the Guinness World Record of 10,917 people.

There will be a number of activities for children including a heaving line contest where they have to pass a heavy line and a life jacket relay race.

Attendees can take free tours of the Coast Guard motor life boat, the Ocean City Fire Department boat and the Maryland Resources Police boat.

There will be exhibits and activities on marine safety, ecology, environmental stewardship, fishing tips and regulations in addition to knot-tying demonstrations. Navigation and softwares will also be on display.

“The Coast Guard Auxiliary will be promoting safe boating and educating on local issues,” Hall said. “Auxiliary members will be there to answer any questions. You will learn something.”

Tide charts and information on the Coast Guards’ American Waterway Watch program will be distributed.

The United States Coast Guard Auxiliary will also be conducting free vessel safety exams.

“Auxiliary members jump on board and take a look to make sure the boat has all required safety features such as lifeboats, a fire extinguisher and life jackets,” Hall said. “If the vessel passes the exam, we give you a sticker. It is free and there is no penalty for not passing.”

Anyone who participates in the life jacket photo, children activities or vessel safety exam will receive a free hot dog and soda.

Attendees are encouraged to download the Coast Guard app on their phones when spending time out on the water for valuable information.

“Across the nation everyone is promoting safe boating to save dozens of lives a season [this week],” Hall said. “It is a powerful thing. We focus on safety while also having fun.”

For more information, call Commander Art Flora at 914-310-8280.

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