The summer is right around the corner in Ohio, which means more and more boaters will be out on the lakes and rivers of the state. The more boaters on the water, the higher the chances are that you could be involved in a boating accident that leads to serious injuries or even death. Here are some tips for avoiding a boating accident this summer in Ohio.

The most sensible way to avoid a boating accident this summer is to monitor the weather forecast prior to setting sail. There’s no reason to go out on the water when high winds, rain, lightning or choppy seas are in the forecast. If a small craft advisory is issued, stay off the water at all costs.

No matter the size of your watercraft, you should always have a lookout with you. Boating alone is a recipe for disaster. If you are in an accident and cannot use your ship-to-shore radio, no one will know you are in distress. A lookout can help spot problems in the water and also call the shore if something goes wrong.

Avoid drinking alcohol while operating your boat. You can be charged with operating a boat while impaired. It is just like driving a car while drunk. Many boating accidents occur because the captain of the vessel was under the influence.

Make sure your boat has working lights if you plan to go out on the water at night. The lights will help you see what is in front of you and help other vessels see your boat in the darkness.

Boating accidents can easily be avoided if you follow the tips outlined in this post. Speed and alcohol are two major factors in most boating accidents. Never combine these two factors and try to go out on your boat without alcohol and stick to safe speeds at all times.