Knowing how to avoid a boat launch accident is the start of a safe, fun boat trip. Trailered boats do run the risk of boat launch accidents each time they're on the boat ramp but, with a bit of caution and some boat launch knowledge, you can have that boat in the water and be motoring out in no time.
- Avoid a boat sinking accident by making sure that the boat plug is securely in place before you put the boat in the water. There's nothing quite like watching your small skiff start to sink the moment it hits the water.
- Knowing how to back up the trailer is critical in avoiding a boat launch accident. It might seem counterintuitive but the boat trailer will turn opposite of the truck. That is, if you want the trailer to go right, you must turn your car or truck to the left. Straightening out the truck and trailer before you reach the bottom of the boat ramp will help you avoid making sharp corrections.
- To avoid an accident, make sure that you pay attention to where your truck is while backing the boat down the ramp. It's very easy to get so caught up in maneuvering the trailer that you clip another boat or truck with your own vehicle.
- If you have someone helping you back up the trailer, make sure they are aware of where the trailer tires are once in the water. Most boat ramps are slippery with algae so it's very easy to lose footing and have the boat trailer run over a foot. Also, make sure your helper is never behind the boat trailer.
- If you have to get out of the truck at the boat ramp, make sure to put on the emergency brake. Avoid an accident by turn the back of your front tire so it is facing the nearest curb of the boat ramp. If the emergency brake should fail, the truck will roll back into the curb which will, hopefully, stop the truck.
- Once you've launched your, move it carefully aside to a secure mooring until the truck and trailer are stowed. Boat launch accidents will most commonly occur at the boat ramp as there will be a lot of traffic with other boaters coming and going. Avoid an accident by getting the boat out of the way as quickly as possible. Watch the back of your boat carefully if you have to back off of the boat ramp as there will be a good chance that another boat may be coming in.