Water Fun 101
How to Stay Safe and Get the Most Fun Out of Tubing
Do you love getting out on the lake or ocean, and having some fun? Well, it is easy to turn a fun trip into an outstanding one. All you have to do is add the right towable tube
and boat to the mix, and soon everyone will join in on the fun! There is one simple catch to make sure everything turns out just right. By following some safety and common sense tips, you will get the most out of your water getaway.
Boater Safety is a Must
Before you begin towing, check the gas tank on your boat. Try to fill it up before you go out as you will tend to burn a great deal more when towing or pulling skiers. Also, before getting out on the lake, it is a good idea to check the weather forecast. It is NEVER acceptable to tow or be out on the water if it is thundering or lightning. It is also a poor idea to be out on the water if it is raining or if the water is rough. Your rider can wear out quickly, leading to a potentially dangerous situation. It is also a good idea to wear a wet suit in cold weather to help stave off hypothermia.
Your tow boat should have a rear view mirror, if possible, and a designated spotter should watch the person on the tube at all times. It is also important to have designated hand signals for easier communication between rider and boat. Keep in mind that some riders will want to go faster. It is up to the person driving the boat to maintain safe speeds to help prevent accidents.
It is best to kill the engines and even remove the key when allowing riders to load or unload. Also, everyone, including the tube rider(s) should wear the proper life jacket. There is also a chance of accidental inhalation of carbon monoxide fumes. To prevent this, your tow line must be twenty feet long or more. Check with the inflatable tube manufacturer’s recommendations, such as those from Aquaglide
, for more information on this. Lastly, do not ever steer your boat too close to other boats or people in or near the water. Doing so can lead to an unfortunate accident.
Know Your Tube
Take the time to learn more about your gear. You should know the weight and rider limits for your towable as well as the rating for your tow gear. By overloading the gear you are running a risk of line breakage which can lead to injury. Some inflatable tubes are for single riders; others, such as the Aquaglide GT 6 person towable
, can carry up to 6 riders! You should also take time to learn the tube itself. Get to know how to get on and off it while in the water. You can do so in a pool or in the shallows before taking it out.
Pulling an empty tube behind the boat can quickly damage it as can pulling one upside down. Never tow more than one tube at a time as lines can cross and injure riders or damage the tubes. Also, know the recommended safe speeds for towing your riders. For adults, this tends to be between twenty and twenty five mph. Children, however, should be towed at less than twenty mph. Towing faster than this can lead to injury as well as possibly damaging the tube itself.
Location, Location, Location
Make sure that everyone involved knows the course you will be taking. Also, discuss how to handle any mishaps that could come up during towing and where to find any safety gear that might be needed. Before heading out you should make sure that there are no nearby hazards including other boats, docks, rocky areas, signage and other such items. You should also make sure that the water is deep enough that the rider will not strike bottom if they are tossed from the tube.
Stowing Your Gear
Taking care of your towable tube, tow line, and harness is also a large part of water safety. When transporting your tube in the boat make sure that it remains out of the captain’s vision. Even if you need to deflate it to do so it would be much safer in the long run. You should always allow your tube to dry completely before packing it away. If it is going to be stowed away for the season, then you should definitely deflate it completely and stow it somewhere indoors.
One last note on water safety and towable tubes: Never mix alcohol and boating or tubing. It is definitely an extremely hazardous combination. The whole idea of getting out on the water on a towable tube or boat and getting wet is to have as much fun as you can while staying as safe as possible. Keep all these things in mind and you will be all set to get the family or friends out on the lake or ocean for some outstanding fun.
About The Author
Jane Warren is a water sport enthusiast. She enjoys swimming, scuba diving, tubing, sailing, and boating. She spends a lot of her time at the beach, either in Florida, or even farther south in Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands. She also has lots of friends and family who come to visit, and enjoy being out on the boat, skiing or riding tubes. Safety is the first priority in all their water sport activities.
Jane is also the publisher of towabletubesdirect.com
. This is a website that helps people interested in purchasing towables, and associated items, find out more information on major brands and their products. She understands that people don’t have the time to spend searching through hundreds of websites for specific products they want to purchase, and publishes this site to make the search for a towable tube, and other water sport related toys, faster and more efficient.