Chapter 2: Boating Safety

Proper PFD Care

For a personal flotation device to be effective, it needs to be in top condition. A device must be in good condition to meet U.S. Coast Guard standards. A PFD that is in good condition will have no major rips or tears, have working straps that can clasp firmly, and will show no major signs of wear. If a PFD shows any of these signs of excessive wear, it is time to get a new one.

Acceptable PFD
Unacceptable PFD

In order to keep a device in top shape, hand wash it with soap and leave it to air dry. Machine washing, use of powerful detergents, and tumble drying all wear down a device fast. Avoid using a direct heat source to dry, or hanging your device in a poorly ventilated space. Finally, only use flotation devices for their intended purpose in order to make the most out of them.

Washing PFD

Following these tips will ensure that a device stays in good condition, longer. Even so, if a device is too deteriorated, then be safe and get a newer one.