Saturday, September 4, 2010

Safely Boating in New York

When my wife and I bought our first kayaks, about nine years ago, we both completed the BoatU.S. Foundation On-line Boating Safety Course  for West Virginia, where we were living at the time, so that we would be better prepared for situations we might face. While many states recognize such On-line Boating Safety Course, New York State does not, so I recently attended the required eight hours of classroom instruction and took and passed the written test to obtain my New York State Safe Boating Certificate. The course was offered through Safe Boating America.

Prior to taking the New York classroom course, however, I read the on-line course and took the practice quizzes. Even though I had undertaken this extra work and have nine years of kayaking experience behind me, I still learned a thing or two from the classroom instruction.

The class was held on a Tuesday and Thursday evening from 6-10 PM in rented classroom space in Midtown Manhattan. There were only twelve people in the class. Our instructor was Captain Kevin Ivany, a U.S.C.G Licensed Master. His teaching included power point presentations, videos, demonstration of equipment, and stories from his own experience as a charter boat captain, as well as the opportunity to ask questions. He was informative and educational as well as entertaining with a wealth of knowledge about New York Harbor and other area waters.

Although New York state does not require a Safe Boating Certificate unless one is operating a Personal Water Craft (PWC i.e. jet ski), and most of the course focused on power boating, I still recommend it for all kayakers paddling in New York Waters and anyone sailing or power boating in New York Waters.


bonnie said...

Hard to get too much education. And learning how powerboats are likely to operate is actually a smart thing for kayakers!

John Edward Harris said...

Canoes, kayaks, sailboats, and powerboats, from the smallest to the largest, are all goverened by the same navagation rules and subject to the same natural forces and stupid operators.