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How To Make Sure Your Personal Flotation Device Fits Properly


Did you know…


  • That half of all recreational boating fatalities happen in calm water?*
  • That these fatalities often happen close to shore?*
  • That in most cases, there were PFDs stored on board the boat, but they weren’t being utilized?*
  • That the number of U.S. boating accidents had steadily fallen from 1997 to 2012, but they have been on the rise since then?**

This is why The U.S. Coast Guard’ Boating Safety Division recommends that all boaters wear PFDs (personal flotation devices) while they are out on the water. Simply having them on the boat isn’t always enough to save a life.

Just wearing a PFD isn’t enough, though. It’s very important to select the right type of PFD, and to make sure that it fits properly. A PFD that doesn’t may slip off, be incapable of keeping the wearer afloat, cause an unconscious person to flip over, or in some cases, cause loss of blood flow or strangulation.

So how do you make sure your life jacket fits? Follow these guidelines, courtesy of The U.S. Coast Guard:

PFD Fitting Guidelines
Whether swimming, fishing, participating in water sports, or just having a family cruise, we want everyone to have a great time out on the water. As always, happy and safe boating from Atlantic Yacht Basin!




Atlantic Yacht Basin featured on NOAA


Atlantic Yacht Basin has always put an emphasis on safety. As a hurricane storage facility, they have helped many boat owners safely endure storms and repair damaged boats. NOAA recently talked with Spencer Hull, Treasurer and Director of Market Development for Atlantic Yacht Basin, Inc. for a feature in their People of Weather-Ready Nation. Spencer was able to share his thoughts on how we can all become safer and more weather-ready boaters.Check out the article here:


9 Most Useful Boating Apps

You probably have dozens of apps on your phone for your everyday life, but did you know there are more you could add for your boating adventures? Apps entertain us, teach us, and keep us connected both on and off land. Here are 9 of our favorite boating apps.

Boat Ramps from TakeMeFishing.org-

as the name would suggest, this app features over 35,000 boat ramps and marinas across the country. If you ever find yourself in need of a place to dock, or launch they have you covered. This app makes it especially easy to plan trips as you will know exactly where you can launch and dock your boat wherever you go.


This app’s most useful feature is the ability to call for a tow and BoatUS will be able to give a location. They offer social media integration to share locations and photos through the app. Your membership also provides discounts at marinas and other locations.


Get high-resolution NOAA RNC raster the United States waters marine charts to your phone. This app offers thousands of charts, making it easy to plan and execute your route wherever you are.


The BEST weather app. You can track the forecast 10 days out or just a few hours. It provides National Weather Service warnings for severe weather and real-time tracking of hurricanes, typhoons, cyclones and even earthquakes.

Boat Essentials-USCG Safety Gear-

This app provides a checklist to ensure you have all the mandated gear on board. You can add your own items to the list so you don’t forget anything important. You can also track the maintenance schedules for up to 3 boats including maintenance for items like fire extinguishers and flares.

Boater’s Pocket Reference-

The Boater’s Pocket Reference provides a multitude of information. It is easy to reference for any boating questions you may have. It has a glossary of marine terminology, guides to understanding weather and U.S. and Canadian Navigation Rules, plus many other helpful features.

Float Plan App-

The Float Plan App makes it easy to file a float plan with a friend or family member. A float plan is a pretty general safety tip and something everyone should file before a boating trip. This app makes doing so even more efficient. It will provide your friend with your route and intended arrival date so that if anything goes awry search crews will know where to look.

Friend Mapper-

Friend Mapper shares your location with friends so that they can find you even out on the water. The app makes it easy to meet up out on the water even if you haven’t planned beforehand. You can also hide your position whenever you want, for those times when you are just looking for some quiet space.

IGFA Mobile-

This app is for all the fisher’s who insist they’re caught the world’s biggest fish. Now you can quickly see how your catch adds up to the world records. The app also has a fish identifier as well as a logging system to keep track of your catches. It really will become your best fishing buddy.

12 Boating and Yachting Safety Tips

In 2014, the United States Coast Guard counted 4,064 accidents that involved 610 deaths. This was 10.6% increase from 2013’s fatalities. It is clear that although there are countless resources on boating safety tips more must be done. The following are 12 safe boating and yachting safety practices that everyone should know about.

  1. Use Your Common Sense – Operate your vessel at safe speeds, keep your eyes peeled for other boats and obstacles such as trees or shallow water, always have an experienced boater on board, don’t go out when the water is too choppy, etc.
  2. Take a Boat Course – These courses go over safety rules and operation protocols and are actually required in some states. All boaters should take these to stay educated and updated on safe boating actions.
  3. Have a Float Plan – Float plans are often given to a relative or local marina and include information such as the boat type and registration, names and phone numbers of each person on board, where you plan to go, and for how long.
  4. Swimming – All of those boating with or around you should know how to swim. This is important for both non-swimmers and people boating with non-swimmers. Find classes near or around you if you don’t know how to swim and plan on being around bodies of water regularly.
  5. Use Safety Equipment – Having the right equipment on board and making sure that each is used properly is vital. Personal flotation devices, throwable flotation devices, fire extinguishers, distress signaling devices are all forms of safety equipment. Before you leave the marina, make sure every passenger knows how to use each of these tools.
  6. Follow a Departure Plan – There are many checklists online, but following a departure plan helps to cover bases that may be missed. Departure checklists often include the following: making sure all of the safety equipment is on board and in working order, the engine is maintained and working properly, you have enough fuel, and have the proper documentation (papers, permits, charts).
  7. Do a Vessel Safety and Maintenance Check – This will likely be a part of your departure plan, but it is important to make sure lights are working, the engine is running fine, and do a fluid analysis to monitor your transmission, among other practices.
  8. Be Weather Aware – Check weather forecasts and weather patterns, keep an eye on the sky while boating, and make sure you have access to a radio to receive any incoming weather updates.
  9. Be Comfortable with First Aid Practices – Medical emergencies can happen at any time and learning to recognize and respond to situations appropriately can benefit those around you as well as yourself.
  10. Plan for Pets – If you plan on bringing Skipper along for the ride, make sure he has a dog life vest. Just as a life jacket helps bring you home safely, animal life jackets help bring family pets home safely.
  11. Avoid Substances that Influence – While alcohol is certainly one of the most frequently used influencers, there are many other types of drugs out there with unwanted and unknown side effects. If you have just begun taking a new prescription medication or are a few beers deep, you probably shouldn’t be operating a boat.
  12. Have Other Able-Bodied Persons Available – In case of emergencies or inebriation, there should be a second individual who knows how to operate the yacht or boat well enough to take over in case the original operator is incapable of doing so for whatever reason.