The U.S. Coast Guard recently released its 2015 Recreational Boating Statistics report. Here is a summary of the findings:
- In 2015, the Coast Guard counted 4,158 accidents that involved 626 deaths, 2,613 injuries and approximately $42 million dollars of damage to property as a result of recreational boating accidents.
- The fatality rate was 5.3 deaths per 100,000 registered recreational vessels. This rate represents a 1.9% increase from 2014’s fatality rate of 5.2 deaths per 100,000 registered recreational vessels.
- Compared to 2014, the number of accidents increased 2.3%, the number of deaths increased 2.6%, and the number of injuries decreased 2.4%.
- Where cause of death was known, 76% of fatal boating accident victims drowned. Of those drowning victims with reported life jacket usage, 85% were not wearing a life jacket.
- Where instruction was known, 71% of deaths occurred on boats where the operator did not receive boating safety instruction. Only 15% percent of deaths occurred on vessels where the operator had received a nationally-approved boating safety education certificate.
- There were 158 accidents in which at least one person was struck by a propeller. Collectively, these accidents resulted in 27 deaths and 150 injuries.
- Eight out of every ten boaters who drowned were using vessels less than 21 feet in length.
- Operator inattention, operator inexperience, improper lookout, machinery failure, and excessive speed rank as the top five primary contributing factors in accidents. (Download 2015 Boating Statistics Infographic PDF)
- Alcohol use is the leading known contributing factor in fatal boating accidents; where the primary cause was known, it was listed as the leading factor in 17% of deaths.
- Twenty-two children under age thirteen lost their lives while boating in 2015. Twelve children (55%) died from drowning. Two children (17%) of those who drowned were wearing a life jacket; half of the remaining ten children who were not wearing a life jacket were not required to do so under State law.
- Where data was known, the most common types of vessels involved in reported accidents were open motorboats (45%), personal watercraft (19%), and cabin motorboats (17%).
- Where data was known, the vessel types with the highest percentage of deaths were open motorboats (46%), kayaks (12%), and canoes (11%).
- The 11,867,049 recreational vessels registered by the states in 2015 represent a 0.5% increase from 2014 when 11,804,002 recreational vessels were registered.
To download a PDF of the entire report, click here.
Safety is a driving force behind the products we create at Protomet. That’s why our PTM Edge line of products offers a variety of high-definition, prescription-grade, wide-angle mirrors for your boat.
It’s our ambition to not only create the best mirrors on the planet, but the safest mirrors as well!