This Boat-Ed safety course video stresses how important having life jackets readily accessible, but also wearing them every time you go out on the water.
The excuses for not wearing a life jacket runs the full range, they get generally from the things are too hot and bulky, they are uncomfortable, they look stupid, whatever it happens to be. It's easy to come up with an excuse for not wearing a life jacket.
A lot of recreational boaters don't wear their lifejacket because they don't think it's going to happen to them. They don't think that accident, they don't think their boat is going to break down, they don't think their vote is going to sink, nobody is invincible.
They will be in the boat; the lifejacket will be in the boat but they will be inside a compartment that is not readily accessible.
One of the issues that we're always addressing of high frequency is having lifejackets readily accessible for boaters. People for some reason like to put them in compartments, keep them in the bags.
Places where I've seen lifejacket stowed away, it would be almost impossible to get to them because not only are they stowed away in the corner of a compartment. But then you have all kinds of other stuff to include anchors and lines and ores and all kind of stuff piled on top of the lifejackets.
We often times find people who keep their lifejackets in the plastic.
One thing we're going to require you to do is to take them out the plastics. I know you want to keep them clean and they look great, but they need to be taken out the plastic. Everyone on board should know where their lifejacket is at. At any moment they should be able to grab that lifejacket and be able to put it on in case something happens.
When a boat is sinking, most inexperienced operators or people onboard that boat are going to start to panic. It's just normal human behavior. When you start to panic it's not the time to start thinking about where they're at. The captain of that boat and the crew has to know where that safety equipment is and has to be readily accessible to immediately get to it and start downing the lifejacket.