The Canadian Safe Boating Council (CSBC) and the BC Wildlife Federation (BCWF) remind anglers that wearing their lifejackets is even more important than wearing their ‘lucky fishing hats.”
But they do share one trait – they both have to be worn to be effective.
According to the CSBC and the Lifesaving Society, 80 per cent of recreational boaters who drown each in Canada were not wearing a lifejacket or Personal Floatation Device (PFD). Most of these drownings occur in small, open power boats, accounting for 60 per cent of these preventable deaths. A majority of these victims were males between 19 and 35 years, out for a day of fishing.
Many of those who don’t wear their lifejackets or PFDs believe that, since they are good swimmers, having them onboard and within easy reach is good enough. However, a lifejacket stored under a seat or up in the bow will be of no help when the unexpected happens, such as/ falling overboard while trying to net the catch.
Many of today’s anglers are delighted with the PFD models, which are designed especially to suit their needs. They’re rugged, allow for full freedom of movement to cast and are constructed with lots of pockets for gear.
When choosing their lifejacket, anglers should also check the label to make sure it is Transport Canada approved, is the correct size and fits snugly.
Fishing is a part of our Canadian fabric and an activity that’s easy to get hooked on. At this important time of year, the CSBC and BCWF ask those who fish to ‘Get Hooked on Lifejackets,’ too.