Safe Boating Week is this Week: Safe Navigation in Fog

Don't be caught in a fog, especially on the water. You just may lose your life. Fog can create very low visibility making safe navigation difficult for boaters. Fog is formed when moist air changes form creating a cloud at the earth's surface. In dense fog the visibility can be reduced to less than a boat length, significantly increasing the risk of collision or grounding your boat.

If your boat is shrouded in fog, reduce your boat speed. Remember - you should always wear your life jacket whether it is foggy or not, but double-check to make sure that everyone is wearing a United States Coast Guard-approved life jacket in situations with fog. Display lights and sound warning signals for limited visibility following navigation safety rules.

You can always anchor in a safe location until conditions improve. Other precautions boaters should take in low visibility include posting lookouts to see and listen for signals or sounds from other vessels, or to just listen for the sound of breaking waves.

Remember that safe boating is no accident. Consider staying in port when dense fog is occurring or is expected. Visit this webpage www.weather.gov/grb for the latest forecast and observation information before setting sail. On the open waters, set your radio frequency to the NOAA Weather Radio for alerts on sudden severe storms that might cross your path. Be prepared, not sorry.



Return to News Archive

USA.gov is the U.S. government's official web portal to all federal, state and local government web resources and services.