Putting safety first when using towable tubes makes for a great day of water fun. I don’t know of anyone that enjoys getting hurt. I do know just about everyone loves to have fun. With a little safety and planning, towable can be just that, a whole lot of fun.
Everyone knows you have to have a personal flotation device (PFD) or life vest if you are on a boat. Anytime you leave the boat to get on a tube, boogie/knee board or any other water toys, you should continue the same safety measure. Every person should have a life vest. If you don’t have enough for everyone, suggest they take turns going out on the boat. Keep in mind that after hanging on for a wild tube ride, even the best swimmers can get fatigued. Being prepared with a life vest makes recovery of downed tubers a less risky. It affords the driver of the boat a little more time to turn the boat around knowing the tuber has a PFD.
Anytime a tuber wipes out, there should be someone on the boat ready to wave a flag. The flags tell other boaters that you have a person in the water. It puts the other boaters on their guard to watch for anyone in the water. One flag is held up for each person in the water. Again, this tells other boaters how many people to watch for. Bright colored flags combined with bright colored PFDs make for the safest measures.
Always make sure you have the proper rope for towable tubes. You need to make sure the rope is rated for what you intend to use it for. It needs to be waterproof, the right length and can handle the weight load you will be towing. Also, make sure there are no weak spots in it and that it is not coming unraveled.
Before you leave home, check to make sure there are no leaks in the tube. While you are at it, check to make sure all equipment is in working order and on board the boat. An easy way to check for leaks is to run water over the tube. If there are any leaks, you will see bubbles appear at the leak. Use the right patch for any leaks. Taking short cuts may cost you in the long run, so do it right from the start.
Not Too Many
You should know how many passengers your boat can safely hold. Due to seating limitations, you may have to take turns with how many people you take out on your boat each time. Use the same judgment when it comes to the number of riders on your towable tube. Too many people on a tube can spell disaster. Should they wipe out, they can get hurt from bouncing off each other. Tubes will tell you how many riders and any weight limits. It is in everyone’s best interest for you to follow these guidelines.
Know the Word No
If you know someone is not going to listen to your requests or likes to get too roudy, don’t be afraid to say no. Remember that you are not only responsible for the riders having fun, but also their safety. People that like to get out of control and too reckless are a danger to everyone. It is better to offend one that ruin a trip for all.
First Aid Kit
All boats should have a first aid kit on them. Towable tubes are relatively safe, but accidents do happen. No matter how safe you try to make the trip. First Aid Kits can be home made and specialized to your area. Items that should be in a first aid kit are bandaids, tylenol, sunscreen, bandages, first aid ointment, peroxide, super glue and smelling salts. In addition to first aid kits, you should also make sure someone has a cell phone in case of emergency.
The thought of safety usually conjures thoughts of boring restrictions. However, anytime you are dealing with speed, bodies and water, safety rules always need to be adhered to. Planning ahead and sticking by your rules will help all tubers to have a great day. Riders will respect you for putting their safety first. They will also remember how much fun they had and be begging for you to take them next time.