Life jackets save lives 

Wearing a life jacket while boating is as important as wearing a seat belt while driving in  a car or wearing a helmet while riding your bike or motorcycle. According to the U.S. Coast Guard Statistics, drowning was the leading cause of death in nearly 3/4 of boating related fatalities and 84% of those who drowned were not wearing life jackets.

Although the state requires children to wear a life jacket, adults are encouraged to wear one. Adults should set a good example for children by wearing their life jackets.

Remember: life jacket wear doesn’t only apply to children – anyone can drown regardless of how old they are and if they consider themselves to be a strong swimmer. 

Life jackets float - you don't!
Watch this video for information on why it is important to wear a life jacket.

  1. Types of Life Jackets
  2. Choosing the Right Life Jacket
  3. Life Jacket Law

Type I - Offshore
- Intended for those going out in open water where quick rescues may be unlikely
- Most buoyant; can turn someone who is unconscious face-up.

Type II - Near-shore
- Intended for calm, inland water where there is a good chance for quick rescue.
Type III - Floatation aids
- Intended for calm, inland water where there is a good chance of fast rescue.
- Generally will not turn an unconscious user face up.
- Activities: fishing, hunting canoeing, kayaking, water skiing, wakeboarding and other inland water tow sports.

Type IV - Throwable device
- Intended to be thrown to someone overboard.
- Of little use to unconscious or exhausted swimmers.
- Not recommended for children or nonswimmers.

Type III & V - Inflatable device
- Hydrostatic (inflates automatically upon immersion or when manually activated).
- Manual (only inlfates when manually activated).
- Belt Pack (worn on our waist. Only inflates when manually activated; must be placed over head once activated. 
- Inflatable life jackets requires maintenance and replacing the CO2 cartridge after each use. Not allowed for use or wear by children under 16 years of age; some inflatable life jackets are not approved for certain activities. Always check the label for directions and requirements.