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New Year’s resolutions for the boater

Have you started to think about New Year’s yet?

Don’t laugh…I’m serious.

Less than a week to go readers before New Year’s eve is upon us….the parties, the football, the parades and the resolutions.

For boaters the beginning of the New Year offers a chance for all of us to do two important things with regards to our boat.

Doesn’t matter if you own a personal watercraft or a smaller version of the QUEEN MARY…these suggestions apply to everyone, and make for resolutions we can actually keep (how many of those have you made and broken in previous years).

First, look at what maintenance, safety and educational activities you completed in 2006. If you can look at each of these items and say that you have adequately addressed each of these.

Did you put off a tune-up? An oil change? Replacing the filters?

Ensuring the shafts are cleaned and free of debris?

If you are venturing off shore in 2007 have you looked at the Coast Guard Auxiliary education schedule for the area and decided on a new course.

Ask the same questions regarding safety issues.

In 2006 did you check the flares, the fire extinguishers, and make sure that all the personal flotation devices were fully serviceable?

How about the radio and emergency communication systems – where they checked and repaired or replaced as appropriate?

If your someone that has relied on a cell phone as your primary communications system – did you take my advice from a previous column to get a good VHF-system aboard, and make that cell phone a good back-up system?

Did you ask the Coast Guard Auxiliary to conduct a free dockside inspection?

Finally, did you make sure that all your boating operations were friendly to the environment?

This means the engines that operate in the cleanest possible manner, with no leaks or spills.

Have you checked your fuel tanks if you have an outboard….any rust or soft spots? The list is endless.

If you answered &uot;no&uot; to any of the questions above, you have the basis of some 2007 Boating New Year’s resolutions.

How easy was that?

Until next week….have a safe and Happy New Year!!