Recreational boating fatalities hit record low

Published online: Jun 15, 2011 News Boating Industry
Viewed 187 time(s)
WASHINGTON - The U.S. Coast Guard released its official 2010 Recreational Boating Statistics today, which show total fatalities fell to 672, the lowest number on record. 

Coast Guard officials said that while they are heartened by the drop, they believe this number remains unacceptably high. 

They noted that the 2010 total is only slightly lower than the 676 deaths in 2004, the previous record low, but it is 26 deaths lower than the average number of fatalities for the last 10 years. 

Total reported accidents were 4,604 in 2010, down from 4,730 in 2009, while injuries totaled 3,153, down from 3,358. Property damage was estimated at $35 million. 

"We're glad to see the numbers decline," Rear Admiral Kevin Cook, Director of Prevention Policy for the U. S. Coast Guard, said in a statement, "but the real tragedy is that so many of these deaths are needless and could have been prevented had boaters taken some simple steps. I am optimistic that the number of deaths and injuries can continue to be reduced further because of the strong commitment to safe boating from our partners in the States, non-government advocacy groups, and the boating industry." 

Operator inattention, improper lookout, operator inexperience, excessive speed, and alcohol use rank as the top five primary contributing factors in accidents. Alcohol use is the leading contributing factor in fatal boating accidents; it was listed as the leading factor in 19 percent of the deaths. 

Cook emphasized the importance of boating education saying, "There is a clear link between safety and boating education. Statistics indicate that boaters who have taken a boating safety course are less likely to be involved in an accident. In addition, almost three-quarters of all fatal boating accident victims drowned; and of those, roughly 90 percent were not reported as wearing a life jacket. The Coast Guard urges all boaters, whether as operators or passengers, to take a boating safety course, avoid alcohol consumption, and to always wear their life jacket." 

You May Also Be Interested In...

March 19, 2015

Carefree Boat Club adds location in Georgia

Carefree Boat Club has just opened a brand new location, adding to its ever-growing lineup.
March 17, 2015

World's fastest pontoon boat gets even faster

When you think of fast boats, a pontoon is probably pretty low on your list, just ahead of houseboats and tugboats. Brad Rowland begs to differ.
March 05, 2015

West Marine begins "Do It Yourselfie!" promotion

Show off your selfie fixing up your boat and West Marine could lend you a hand.
March 04, 2015

Pontoon Brands United

Premier Marine announced today the company will transfer the production of its Weeres and Palm Beach brands to its headquarters in Wyoming, Minn.
March 02, 2015

West Marine's New Product Review Day set for March 20

West Marine has announced the date for this year's iteration of their New Product Review Day.
February 19, 2015

Honda Marine and Coach Pontoons Are Now Partners

The PDB team has exciting news! While we were at the 2015 Miami International Boat Show, Honda Marine announced their new exclusive OEM agreement with Coach Pontoons!
Follow us on Facebook!  Follow us on Instagram!  Follow us on Twitter!  Follow us on YouTube!