Junior safe boating class offered for children



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The Banana River Sail and Power Squadron has been all about safety on the water since 1956. The nonprofit educational organization dedicated to making boating safer and more enjoyable teaches classes in seamanship, navigation and related subjects. 

The Banana River Sail and Power Squadron is part of District 23, which is comprised of 11 squadrons in the northeast part of Florida.

In March, the members of the local power squadron qualified eight of its members as certified vessel safety examiners. As a result, these certified inspectors will, at no charge, and confidentially, inspect any boater’s vessel, on land or on the water. They will use the same requirements as law enforcement agencies patrolling the Indian River Lagoon, and they will document any issues or shortcomings they find so the boaters can make the necessary corrections. Their findings are not reported to authorities. The only people with the final inspection documentation will be the boaters themselves. The inspector will keep a statistical record for summaries provided to the squadron.

Boaters whose vessels pass the inspection will receive a bright vessel inspection sticker, which will indicate to other boaters and law enforcement that the vessel has successfully passed an inspection. More importantly, these boat owners and pilots will know they can boat safely.

In May, the squadron conducted boater safety flare up practice. Flares can save lives and vessels when used correctly, but if used incorrectly, they can injure boaters and destroy vessels. Because the use of flares is prohibited except in emergency, boaters cannot practice their correct and safe usage. So the Banana River Sail and Power Squadron offered sanctioned supervised instruction and hands-on practice with the types of flares required by law and used by boaters on the Indian River Lagoon at no cost to boaters.

In June, the Power Squadron is offering a junior safe boating class for children 11 to 17 years old. Students will learn the basics of boat handling, safety, navigation rules, government regulations and water sports. Attendance at the three-day course and passing the test is required to obtain the boating safety education ID card, required by Florida state law to operate a boat with 10 horsepower
or more.

The course runs from June 6 through June 8 and begins at 9 a.m. each day. Instruction will take place at Satellite Beach Recreation Center, 1089 S. Patrick Dr., Satellite Beach. The fee is $10 per student.

To register, or for more information, call 321-773-6458.