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Old     (mossy44)      Join Date: Oct 2001       02-02-2008, 6:56 PM Reply   
My wife and I were having a discussion. It brought up the topic of which is more dangerous... traveling on the highway, or being in a boat on the lake.

It was brought up because of parents being hesitant to let kids out on boats. So, my wife asked me "would you feel safer driving down the I-40 from Memphis to Nashville, or driving out on the waterway where we ski?" I said I would feel safer on the road because of all of the idiots on the water.

So, my question is this. Percentage wise, do you think more accidents happen on boats or cars?
Old     (treycleaton)      Join Date: Mar 2005       02-02-2008, 7:07 PM Reply   
Percentage wise, cars because there are simply many more of them. Concentration of idiots? Definitely boats!
Old     (rnopr8)      Join Date: Apr 2005       02-02-2008, 7:29 PM Reply   
It's all relative...I say boats because I commute 80 miles a day in the Riverside/LA are WAY safer. If I lived in a town of 20,000 in Kalispell, Mt, I would have a different perspective.
Old     (rallyart)      Join Date: Nov 2006       02-02-2008, 7:56 PM Reply   
By the hour you spend in them, boats are more dangerous than cars for major incidents.
You have to look past the appearance. Riding a horse is far more dangerous than wakeboarding or motorcycle racing, even if you are an experienced rider.
Old     (trickyboarder08)      Join Date: Jul 2005       02-02-2008, 9:05 PM Reply   
I think cars would be more dangerous. Just think about it, almost everyone who drives has been in some kind of car accident. But I wouldn't think that almost everyone that drives a boat has had an accident. I have had 4 car wrecks (minor included) and no boat accidents. But, if you are talking about PWC's that's a different story.
Old     (ironj32)      Join Date: Jan 2007       02-03-2008, 6:38 AM Reply   
cars for sure.
Old    walt            02-03-2008, 7:38 AM Reply   


By the hour you spend in them, boats are more dangerous than cars for major incidents.

I agree. I know you can't teach common sense but most boat owners have zero training. That's not to say that licensed car drivers can't/won't drive badly.

I guess what I'm saying is you can ad ignorance to the equation. For example, most people understand that it's very dangerous to be in a garage with a car running but they don't understand that you can die just as easy sitting on a swim deck while a boat is running. We all see bad car drivers out there and I'm sure those same people carry their bad habits over to the water but you can ad ignorance to that making boating more dangerous.
Old     (njskier)      Join Date: Jul 2005       02-03-2008, 8:49 AM Reply   
Driving in a boat is safer than driving in a car. Alot less boats/per mile than cars per mile.

It's the same statement as flying in a plane is safer than driving in a car. (only you have less chance of living thru a plane accident)

I've seen plenty of poor drivers in cars and boats, they'll all out there so drive defensive.
Old     (denverd1)      Join Date: May 2004       02-03-2008, 10:13 AM Reply   
this could go either way..

You also have to look at "boat owners" vs the experienced owners/drivers/riders that frequent this site. Most "bost owners" don't put 100 hrs on their boats each year. Granted for every experienced owner, there are 100 idiots that come out twice a year.

It all comes down to the idiots around us. I feel better on the lake, simply because there are fewer idiots within my immediate area.
Old     (radikal)      Join Date: Feb 2004       02-03-2008, 10:47 AM Reply   
Also it depends on the location where you use your boat, if you use your boat in a open space with not a lot of traffic then there is less risk of accident, but risk raise if you are in a spot where there is some beaches near and youre a long weekend, sometimes people forget they have a boat to drive, i saw plenty of morrons drunk jumping on their boat and putting full gaz and jumping waves later in the day. I think the boat is a safe thing BUT just be carefull of where you drive and at who is near héhé it was just my opinion and based on what i saw but im pretty sure a lot of guys can affirm this comment

(Message edited by Radikal on February 03, 2008)
Old     (lovin_the_wake)      Join Date: Jul 2007       02-03-2008, 11:39 AM Reply   
My best friend and I were in a really bad boating accident once I got away w/o a scratch and my friend died instantly all because some fisherman was marking his fishing spot on his GPS while driving and he ran right over the top of our boat
Old     (radikal)      Join Date: Feb 2004       02-03-2008, 11:56 AM Reply   
Omg what a crazy thing, sorry man.

I saw one thing like that 2 summer ago, a guy drop is cell phone on the floor he try to pick it up when he left his head too late he drove in the back of a 23 footer Doral. The guy was driving a Baja 36 feet @ around 35 mph the guy in the baja get out with minor injuries and in the Doral 1 person with major injuries and 1 person died. Always bad when those things happend, its not because you are on open waters you dont have to be always focused accident happend really quick, or only a log can cost you a lot of money just pay attention and you'll be fine its like when you drive a car, drive for other first
Old     (lovin_the_wake)      Join Date: Jul 2007       02-03-2008, 12:04 PM Reply   
it was 2 years ago when it happened I wish there was some kinda boat safety class requirement that you have to take and get a boating license or a PWC license just like you have to have for a car or motorcycle I mean any jackass can go buy a boat and drive it. it just doesn't make sense to me
Old     (phantom5815)      Join Date: Jul 2002       02-03-2008, 1:40 PM Reply   
If there were equal number of boats to cars, I would vote more boating accidents.
Old     (robertr720)      Join Date: Aug 2007       02-04-2008, 8:28 AM Reply   
If there were an equal # of boats to cars I would have to find a new sport
Old     (behindtheboat)      Join Date: Aug 2006       02-04-2008, 9:07 AM Reply   
With all the new wanna be wakeboard- jet-boats coming out now, it will become the waterways...:-(
Old     (cmcathy1)      Join Date: Dec 2007       02-04-2008, 10:38 AM Reply   
Statically driving a car is definitely way more dangerous. However when there is a boating accident, the damage and injuries are much worse. Obviously, since there are no air bags or seat belts in boats (not that they would do you much good in a boat, but that's my point). Also I think the fact that most people (including myself) will have a couple of beers and not think twice about driving a boat, but I would not do the same in a car.

(Message edited by cmcathy1 on February 04, 2008)
Old     (mossy44)      Join Date: Oct 2001       02-04-2008, 10:38 AM Reply   
I guess Phantom phrased the question a bit better. If you think of it along the lines of this.....

Take a given day and I will make up #'s.

On Saturday, there were 300 boats on Lake ABC and 2 accidents.

On that same day, there were 30,000 cars that traveled between Point A and Point B. There were 5 accidents.

Thats what I meant by "percentage". Obviously, there are more cars than boats, so I would suspect there are more wrecks in cars.

I guess it would be pretty hard to determine the answer no matter which way you look at it. I guess more for discussion purposes
Old     (boarditup)      Join Date: Jan 2004       02-04-2008, 10:52 AM Reply   
If you look at the USCG statistics, boating is safer than a car. By the hour, far few incidents, injuries, accidents, and the severity of the accidents.

If you look at the boating stats, a few things pop out:

High percentage of PWC incidents.
High percentage of new boat incidents (new boat or new boater, less than 100 hours).
High percentage of falling overboard and drowning. Most are from small fishing boats (less than 20').

If you have a familiar boat, in familar water, and are not on a PWC or a small fishing boat, you are very safe.

Although not tracked directly, the incidents involving towed watersports are very low - too low for a separate measurement. For the nation, you can count on one hand every year.

If you want kids to be even safer:

PFDs worn (life jackets)
Kept well inside the gunnels
Idle speed within 50 feet of a person in the water.
Trick release used at all times.
Old     (wakedv)      Join Date: May 2007       02-04-2008, 2:21 PM Reply   
People need to remember, water on the water and beer on the pier, if more followed this rule we would have fewer accidents. It still seems socially acceptable to operate a boat while impaired, not too many years ago the same was true of drinking and driving. Most recreational boating accidents are booze related...shocking...not!
Old     (kiwi_24)      Join Date: Nov 2006       02-04-2008, 3:11 PM Reply   
having lived in whitefish mt, as a kiwi i was astonished by the amount of dangerous unexperienced boaters on the lake, having been tboned by a jetski, almost hit on a number of other occasions I would definately say the lake was more dangerous. in new zealand however i would say it is the opposite
Old     (wakerider111)      Join Date: Jul 2006       02-04-2008, 3:20 PM Reply   
I am from the Lake Powell area.

You would be surprised at how many people think that a lake cant get too dangerous when it is windy. "its just a lake... its not like it is the sea..."

Durring the "monsoon season" (mostly arround July) the tail winds from tropical storms near mexico and surrounding areas turn up with-in minutes and stir-up some crazy waves and sinks boats from party pontoon boats to 3 story house boats.
In powell (and in some other lakes too i assume) when the wind picks up, hide on the opposite side of a canyon wall and wait it out. don't be "brave" and try to make it back in (with only a seat cushion to remember your boat by)... unless you are only several yards away or something.
Old     (rnopr8)      Join Date: Apr 2005       02-04-2008, 5:18 PM Reply   
Hey Ben..did you see my earlier post?
"It's all relative...I say boats because I commute 80 miles a day in the Riverside/LA are WAY safer. If I lived in a town of 20,000 in Kalispell, Mt, I would have a different perspective".

How did a Kiwi end up in Whitefish? I lived in Kalispell 5 years.
Old     (ktmwakeboarder)      Join Date: Jun 2004       02-04-2008, 7:53 PM Reply   
I feel safer on the road. On the water, too many newbies/drunks
Old     (2007_x2)      Join Date: May 2007       02-04-2008, 8:12 PM Reply   
it all depends on how u compare the two. if u think the delta compared to a country high way than boating is more dangerous or if u compare lake trinity to bay area traffic than boating is safer. it also depends on your son like i have been driving a boat since i was 11 putting it on and off the trailer and towing people, but my little bro that is now 19 cant put the boat on the trailer or off and is not comfortable as i am driving the boat.
Old     (sacmule)      Join Date: May 2007       02-08-2008, 3:25 PM Reply   
I am more comfortable driving a car then a boat; although I would much rather drive a boat than a car. I a car all traffic moves, for the most part in one direction; drivers in all directions of travel. The driver of a car is not going to make a u-turn on the freeway, however on the lake that is exactly what is done. Most people condemn drinking in a car while it is more accepted in the boat on the lake. With that said, it is vitally important to maintain order in the boat you are operating while remaining aware of everything going on on the lake. In a car everyone is in seat belts, not the case in boats. As a responsible boater, it is very important to ensure that all people, kids and adults alike (especially kids), keep there seats while the boat is in motion. And please shut off the boat while people are boarding from the water. It is very easy to have an awesome time on the water while keeping your boat safe. Sometime common sense doesn't seem that common.


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