U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary Offers One Day Boating Safety Class

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9:00 AM - 4:00 PM

Pine Ridge Community Center
15660 Pine Ridge Road Fort Myers, FL 33908

The Boat America Class Will Teach You The Ropes

Learn about boat safety, equipment, and regulations, and earn a state boating safety certificate at the Boat America Class on Responsible Boating from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, April 15, at the Pine Ridge Community Center 15660 Pine Ridge Road, Ft. Myers, FL 33908 (next to the fire station and across from the Tax Collectors Office). The program is offered every third Saturday of the month. Register online at www.Aux91FMB.org/safeboating or 239-690-6780 option 1.

Although recreational boating is an enjoyable pastime and we have ample resources to fulfill the diverse demands of pleasure boaters, our waterways can become congested and tumultuous at times. Boating is an excellent source of recreation, but it can also be a hazardous sport for the unprepared. According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission’s 2020 Boating Accident Statistical Report, which is the most recent available, there were 52 boating accidents in Lee County, Florida in 2020. These accidents resulted in 3 fatalities and 36 injuries.  Failing to adhere to the Navigation Rules or the nautical “Rules of the Road,” consuming alcohol or drugs while operating a boat, and choosing not to wear a life jacket are all instances of human error and poor decision-making that can increase the risk of accidents.

For anyone born on or after January 1, 1988, who will be operating a boat in Florida waters with an engine of ten (10) horsepower or more, the law requires them to complete an approved boating safety course and obtain a Florida Boating Safety ID Card. This card is not a boating license, it is a certification that the person named on the card has completed the required boating safety course.

The U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary has a team of expert presenters who provide valuable insights and relate the course material to our local area. Greg Masonick, Flotilla Commander of Fort Myers Beach Flotilla 91, emphasizes the significance of education and awareness of boating hazards for safe boating. “Attending in-person classes is an excellent opportunity for students to interact, share perspectives, and gain local knowledge. Participants learn about the importance of life jackets, risk reduction, preparedness, and exercising sound judgment.” The one-day class is priced at $45 per person, which includes study materials, and advanced registration is mandatory. The class is tailored to fit conveniently into almost everyone’s busy schedule.