Despite the fact that the number of registered boats has remained approximately the same in the past decade, the U.S. Coast Guard’s 2015 Recreational Boating Statics report that 2013-2015 has seen the lowest fatality rate in a 36 month period since before 1997.
Last year, 428 of the 626 boating fatalities resulted from drowning, with 85 percent of the drowning victims not reported as wearing a life jacket. The Coast Guard is urging recreational boaters to make sure everyone on board wears their life jacket at all times on the water. While there is no guarantee a life jacket will prevent drowning, very few drownings occur while wearing them.
Boaters should ensure that all life jackets fit their intended wearers appropriately. A life jacket that does not fit properly may not support a boater well enough to keep their airway clear of water.
United States Coast Guard maintains records of marine accidents and fatalities. The States are expected to compile and submit to the Coast Guard reports, information, and statistics on casualties reported to the state.