11 Tips for River Safety

  1. Tell someone where you are going, when you expect to return, and where to call if you don’t.
  2. NEVER BOAT ALONE. Be sure your whitewater/boating skills and experience are equal to the river and the conditions.
  3. Wear a properly fitted Personal Flotation Device (PFD) at all times when you are in or near the river.
  4. Know your limits of swimmers rescue and self rescue on whitewater rivers. Know when and how to swim for an eddy.
  5. Be prepared for extremes in weather, especially cold. Know about the dangers of hypothermia and how to deal with it. Know early signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion and dehydration in hot weather.
  6. Reduce threat of injury by wearing protective footwear and proper clothing.
  7. Carry a first aid kit and know how to use it. Learn or review medical aid responsibilities and CPR.
  8. Never run a rapid unless you can see a clear path through it. Watch out for new snags after winter and spring floods.
  9. Allow the craft ahead of you to pass through the rapid before you enter it. This will avoid a double disaster if the leading boat blocks the channel.
  10. When in doubt, stop and scout. If you are still in any doubt? Portage!
  11. Review these tips with your guests before you set out.

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