Safe Boating Course


CHAPTER 4: Emergency Preparedness

Capzising and Falls Overboard: Survival 

In the event that you find yourself in the water after your boat capsizes or you fall overboard, here are some tips to remember:

  • First, stay calm and conserve energy.
  • If you were boating with others, take a headcount and make sure everyone is accounted for. Stay together.
  • If possible, re-board your boat.
  • Stay with your boat unless it’s headed for a hazard. Small boats tend to float; by holding on to your boat, you will help conserve energy and remain more visible to other boaters who can come to your rescue.
  • When separated from your boat in a fast moving river, float on your back with your feet pointed downstream.
  • And most important, get out of the water as quickly as possible.

Falls overboard and capsizing show how important it is to wear a lifejacket. If you end up in the water, your lifejacket will help you conserve energy, stay warm and keep afloat while you wait for rescue.