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Safety Nugget week of June 29 - Water Safety< Back to Blog

Jun 29, 2015
By: K. McCarley
Categories: Safety

Tragic drownings occur every year that could have been prevented if the proper life jackets were worn.  Four drownings in Oklahoma this month are reported in the articles found at the links below:

Don’t let this be you or a loved one.

The Oklahoma Department of Public Safety regulations  for personal flotation devices is copied below.  The regulations really outline the minimums, but the need to use life jackets is understated.  Wearing a life jacket is also for the safety of others in your party.

Consider what would happened in the event that you are needed to help someone else in trouble, while in the lake or river.  Could you save others while not wearing a life jacket?  Would you be putting others in danger if they had to save you?

Safety requirements for all boats: https://www.dps.state.ok.us/lp/lps.htm

Personal flotation device or PFD (life jacket):

  • All boats must carry one wearable USCG-approved PFD for each person on board.
  • All passengers 12 years and younger on boats less than 26 feet in length must wear a United States Coast Guard-approved PFD whenever the vessel is underway.
  • Life jackets must:
    • be United States Coast Guard (USCG) approved
    • be in good and serviceable condition, and
    • must be of suitable size for the intended person, and approved for the activity.

Each person on a personal watercraft, or PWC, or being towed on water skis or other devices, must wear a USCG-approved PFD at all times. Ski belts are not approved PFDs.

In addition to the wearable life jacket requirement, all boats 16 feet or greater in length shall also have on board at least one USCG approved Type IV Throwable device. 

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