Safe Boating Course


CHAPTER 3: Trip Planning and Preparation

Checking Local Weather and Water Conditions

Before any boating trip, you should check the short-term and long-term local weather forecast as reported on the radio, TV or Internet. You should always factor these weather forecasts into your preparations as you make your trip plan. For example, you’ll want to avoid certain types of weather whenever possible, such as heavy fog or strong winds. You’ll also want to pay particular attention to hurricane warnings; you should never go boating if there is a hurricane warning in effect.

Once on the water, tune a portable radio to a VHF-FM weather station that broadcasts the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)federal agency focused on the condition of the oceans and the atmosphere. to get accurate, detailed and up-to-date weather information. N-O-A-A Weather Radio is frequently updated and covers the coastal areas of continental United States, Alaska, Hawaii, and the Mariana Islands with continuous weather broadcasts. It’s your best resource for weather information while on the water. You'll find the NOAA broadcasts on the following frequencies:




162.550 MHz 162.400 MHz 162.475 MHz

These broadcasts include weather information like temperature, humidity, wave conditions, barometric pressure, as well as wind speed and direction---all important factors for determining when and where to boat, and when to head for shore.