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Boater Skip Day: What to know before you go

Green Cove Springs, Fla. — Friday is Boater Skip Day, an annual tradition where boaters skip work to spend the day on the water.

Boaters are meeting up at 9 a.m. at Marker 24 at Bayard Point, just south of the Shands Bridge.

The Shands Boat Ramp will be closed to the public and used only by law enforcement officials through Friday evening.

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Here are some things the Clay County Sheriff’s Office wants to know before you go:

  • If you go to a boat ramp and aren’t towing a boat, don’t park in the spaces used for people with trailers.
  • Park in the proper designated space.
  • Do not block another legally parked vehicle in a designated parking space.
  • Do not park in the median or shoulder of Highway 17.

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The North Florida Marine Association has these tips for boaters:

  • Check equipment. Schedule a free vessel safety check with local U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary or U.S. Power Squadrons to make sure all essential equipment is present, working, and in good condition.
  • Make a float plan. Always let someone on shore know the trip itinerary, including operator and passenger information, boat type and registration, and communication equipment on board.
  • Wear a life jacket. Make sure everyone wears a life jacket—every time. A stowed life jacket is of no use in an emergency.
  • Use an engine cut-off device—it’s the law. An engine cut-off device is a proven safety device to stop the boat’s engine should the operator unexpectedly fall overboard.
  • Watch the weather. Always check the forecast before departing and frequently during the excursion.

Click here for more safe boating advice.

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