skip to main content

Some quick facts

  • In 2006, 70% of reported fatalities occurred on boats where the operator had not received boating safety instruction.
  • Operator inattention, carelessness/reckless operation, excessive speed, and no proper lookout are the primary contributing factors in all reported accidents.
  • Alcohol use is the leading contributing factor in fatal boating accidents accounting for nearly 20% of all reported fatalities.
  • It is estimated that 423 lives could have been saved in 2006 if all boaters had worn life jackets.

Boating safety

At Travelers we're committed to your boating insurance needs. We also know how important it is to stay safe on the water. As the boating season has officially started through most of the country, here are a few tips we offer to keep your boating season safe and enjoyable.

Buoy Rope
Wear a life jacket while boating
Coast guard approved life jackets are now more attractive in appearance and more comfortable to wear. Visit this years Safe Boating Campaign website dedicated to the use of life jackets.
Keep fire extinguishers onboard
According to law, shipboard fire extinguishers must be of "B" category, which are effective against fires that are gas-based and other flammable liquids. Remember to keep extinguishers at multiple spots on your boat and to check the expiration date before each boating season.
Don't drink and boat
Alcohol use is the leading contributing factor in fatal boating accidents accounting for nearly 20% of all reported fatalities.
Fuel your boat properly
Gasoline vapors are heavier than air and can spread rapidly into enclosed spaces. Always run your blower for 5 minutes after fueling the boat to eliminate gasoline vapors. Check the bilges and all closed compartments for gasoline vapors before starting your boat. The sniff test is the most effective method for detecting fuel leaks.
Check the weather
Weather can change very quickly while you're out on the water. Check weather on local TV or The Weather Channel or visit the NOAA website for up to date weather information. Listen to the weather channel on your VHF radio. Use caution if the weather calls for Small Craft Advisories or storm warnings.
Participate in the Vessel Safety Check (VSC) Program
This is a free public service offered by the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary and U.S. Power Squadron volunteer organizations. Take advantage of the Do It Yourself Vessel Safety Check to see how safe your boat is. Learn more at

Share this page

The information on this site is general in nature. Any description of coverage is necessarily simplified. Whether a particular loss is covered depends on the specific facts and the provisions, exclusions and limits of the actual policy. Nothing on this site alters the terms or conditions of any of our policies. You should read the policy for a complete description of coverage. Coverage options, limits, discounts and deductibles are subject to availability and to individuals meeting our underwriting criteria. Not all features available in all areas.

Insurance is underwritten by The Travelers Indemnity Company and its property casualty affiliates, One Tower Square, Hartford, CT. For a complete list of personal insurance underwriting companies, click here.