The Coast Guard's Office of Auxiliary and Boating Safety has released its Recreational Boating Statistics 2011 report, which reveals a 12.8 percent increase in boating accident deaths and a 2.3 percent decrease in related injuries.
The number of boating accidents decreased 0.35 percent.
The Coast Guard recorded 758 deaths, 3,081 injuries and approximately $52 million in property damage stemming from 4,588 recreational boating accidents in 2011. Only nine percent of deaths occurred on boats where the operator has received boating safety instruction.
“The data in the 2011 publication echoes the message that life jacket wear is critical,” said Rear Adm. Kevin Cook, the Coast Guard's director of prevention policy. “Nearly 75 percent of the 758 people who died in boating accidents in 2011 drowned and 78 percent of those victims reportedly were not wearing a life jacket. The two most important things boaters can do to prevent the loss of life is to wear a life jacket and take a boater education course.”
Review the statistics here.