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Governor Proclaims Alaska Safe Boating Week

(Anchorage, AK) Governor Sean Parnell has proclaimed May 16-22, 2010 as Safe Boating Week in Alaska.  A copy of the proclamation will be available on line at: http://gov.alaska.gov/parnell/press-room/proclamations.html

The State of Alaska has in excess of 33,000 miles of coastline in addition to vast interior river systems and fresh water lakes. It comes as no surprise that Alaskans use these waters as a means of day-to-day transportation, subsistence and for recreational activities.

However, every year Alaskan boaters lose their lives in boating accidents. Most boating fatalities in Alaska are the result of the capsizing of or a fall overboard from a boat, where the victim was not wearing a life jacket. Alaska’s cold water is unforgiving and many of these tragedies could have been prevented if boaters had made safety their first priority.

Boating accidents often happen in seconds, on rough or calm water, whether the boater is a novice or very experienced. One of the best ways to improve a boater’s chance of surviving a boating accident in Alaska is to “Boat Smart From the Start”. Everyone needs to wear a life jacket when on board an open boat or when on an open deck.

This boating season, national and state boating organizations, state and federal agencies and local governments are again joining together to promote safe boating through education, and emphasizing the importance of wearing life jackets. By working together, the message of safe boating continues to be spread, helping to prevent boating fatalities.

The Alaska Office of Boating Safety works to reduce Alaska's boating fatalities and enhance safe enjoyable boating, with an emphasis on boater education. Information on programs and links to other agencies can be found on their web site at www.alaskaboatingsafety.org

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