Safe Boating Week: Get ready before you get on the water with boating safety information and tips

5:35 PM, May 19, 2012   |    comments
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A Florida Fish & Wildlife Commission officer performs a safety check in this FWC photo.

Tampa, Florida -- Safe Boating Week starts Saturday, as a flood of folks hit the water all over the Tampa Bay area.

Boating safety experts from the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary joined 10 News on The Morning Show early Friday morning to share safe boating tips and precautions.

Check out the video at the top of this story for Florida boating safety tips and find out more from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission and U.S. Coast Guard.

There are more than 940,000 boats registered in Florida, and FWC estimates there are up to one million unregistered vessels out on the water, as well.

Pinellas was in the top five counties for the number of boating mishaps during 2010, the most recent year with available statistics.

Statewide, 2010 saw nearly 400 injuries and 79 deaths on the water.

The most likely way to be killed in a boating incident isn't through something dramatic like a collision or getting stranded in the Gulf of Mexico.

The largest single cause of deaths in 2010 was falls overboard, leading to about a quarter of all boating deaths in Florida.

The other 73 percent of boating deaths came from a range of causes -- so experts say it's critical to take a range of precautions when you're out of the water.

Two-thirds of boating accidents in Florida involved operators who didn't have formal training.

The U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary is a civilian volunteer group that offers boating safety classes. Find out more at the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary Tampa Bay website.

Grayson Kamm, 10 News

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