Renting a boat or jet ski for a day of fun on the water seems like a great idea. Who doesn’t love the freedom and excitement of cruising across the waves? But behind the thrills, these rentals come with serious hazards that customers rarely consider.
In this safety guide, we reveal the hidden dangers of renting recreational boats and jet skis so you can stay informed and protect yourself.
Lack of Training and Experience
Boats and jet skis take skill to operate safely. But rentals hand over the keys to anyone with a valid ID. No training or boating license required in most places.
This leads to accidents when inexperienced drivers:
Even veteran boat owners can struggle with an unfamiliar rental model. Every boat handles differently. Don’t overestimate your abilities.
Minimal Safety Instructions
Rental companies give customers a 2-minute safety overview at best. There’s simply no time to cover all the hazards and proper precautions.
Renters head out lacking knowledge on:
This information gap puts everyone at major risk when accidents strike.
Lack of Safety Gear
While rentals provide life jackets, other vital safety gear is often missing or inadequate, including:
Don’t expect the rental company to provide full safety preparation. Pack your own essential gear before heading out.
Boat rentals suffer extreme wear and tear from continual use by untrained drivers. But maintenance is often deferred to cut costs.
Watch out for:
Perform thorough pre-launch checks to identify issues before leaving the dock.
It’s tempting to cram a rental boat full of friends and gear for an epic day out. But overloading causes disasters like:
Obey the maximum capacity limits at all times. Distribute weight evenly for best stability.
Lack of Ownership
When people rent a boat, they tend to have little regard for its care. They didn’t pay tens of thousands to buy it after all. This leads to reckless operation.
Treat rentals as if they were your own vessel to avoid problems.
Other Risk Factors
Besides what we’ve covered, renting boats and jet skis introduces other hazards like:
The thrillseeking mindset of rentals means letting your guard down. Stay cautious and don’t give into peer pressure.
Play It Safe With Rentals
Boat and jet ski rentals can be great fun. But only if you take the risks seriously, follow safety precautions and use common sense.
Some top tips include:
Applying these smart precautions will keep you, your passengers and other people out on the water safe. Take responsibility for your own safety rather than expecting the rental company to do so. Then you can truly relax and enjoy the ride.
Safe boating out there!