On Monday, Brazil Mayor Ann Bradshaw signed a National Safe Boating Week proclamation for May 17-23, 2009, to support the goals of the North American Safe Boating Campaign.
"We do vessel safety checks at no charge," Wabash Valley Power Squadron Executive Officer John Allen told The Brazil Times. "As part of the checks, we provide life jackets, fire extinguishers and a decal for the boat indicating it has been inspected for safety."
Allen added on average, nearly 700 people die each year in the United States from boating-related accidents, approximately 70 percent of which are caused by drowning.
"It is an important safety measure to wear a life jacket when boating," he said. "The Power Squadron also offers free classes to provide information about ways to maintain boat safety."
The proclamation states the vast majority of boating accidents are caused by human error and/or poor judgment, not by the boat, equipment or environmental factors.
It also claims a significant number of boaters who lose their lives each year by drowning would be alive today if a life jacket had been worn as a large percentage were not wearing one.
To schedule a free vessel safety check or sign up for a boating class, contact Allen by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.