Steven Cahill is the owner of Hook’n Them Up Fishing Charters located in Port McNeill.

Fishin’ Corner: Boating safety, it’s your responsibility.

It is mandatory that everyone possess a POCC Card, or, for a guide such as myself, to have an SVOP.

While you may think that nothing will ever happen to you, that you’re super safe on the water and you follow the rules of the road, have all the right navigation equipment, radio, and safety equipment.

The fact is, accidents happen. People often operate without proper equipment, insurance or even the proper knowledge to operate in the weather conditions they plan on fishing or boating in.

It is mandatory that everyone possess a POCC Card, or, for a guide such as myself, to have an SVOP.

As a boat operator in Canada, you are legally responsible for equipping yourself, your passengers and your boat with the right equipment.

Please do not add custom modifications to your vessel without proper guidance from Transport Canada Safety.

If you do the work or modify your vessel in a manner that is not a compliant you will be fined, or possibly worse if you cause an accident and are found to be at fault.

So here are some rules and regulations to keep you and others safe out on the water.

Navigation Lights

Sidelights are red (port) and green (starboard) and shine from dead ahead to 112.5° aft on either side.

Stern lights are white and shine aft and 67.5° forward on each side. (Thus, the sidelights and stern light creates a full circle of light.) All-round lights are white and shine through 360°. Masthead lights are white and shine from 112.5° on the port side through dead ahead to 112.5° on the starboard side. They must be above the sidelights.

Safety Equipment

1. PDF Personal Flotation Device

2. Buoyant Heaving Line

3. lifebuoy

4. reboarding device

5. Watertight flashlight

6. Canadian approved flares

7. Paddles

8. Anchor

9. Manual Bilge Pump

10. Bailing bucket

11. Navigation Lights

12. Marine VHF Radio

13. Magnetic Compass

14. Fire extinguishers

15. In some cases radar reflector

16. Boater safety Manual

17. First aid kit

To see what exactly you need to have on your particular vessel, please visit a Transport Canada approved safety website so you can ensure that you have the right equipment for your vessel.

It is indeed your responsibility to ensure you are operating your vessel properly at all times in all weather conditions.

Simply saying ‘I didn’t know’, just doesn’t cut it.

I hope everyone stays safe out there and has a fantastic time this year on the water.

Until next time folks, tips up and tight lines and keep on fishin’!

Steven Cahill is a Field Tester for Gibbs Delta Tackle, Oki Tackle, Pesca Lures & freelance writer as well as Owner of Hook’n Them Up Fishing Charters located in Port McNeill. Toll-Free:1-855-805(FISH)3474 Cell 250-230-0579

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