On Air: Beach Safety and Planning Ahead Top Priorities Through the Seasons
Great Lakes Boating & Marine Trades - News

Contact:
 
Dave White, New York Sea Grant, Recreation and Tourism Specialist, P: 315-312- 3042, E: dgw9@cornell.edu

Syracuse, NY, February 24, 2021 - Central New York Waterways are still busy in the Winter months with boating on open water and ice fishing on the frozen over lakes and rivers. But whether you’re looking ahead to Spring, or enjoying the cold temperatures on the waterways, Dave White of New York Sea Grant says safety and planning ahead should always be your number one priority.

This information was shared during a boating segment that aired on several 93Q programs, including Street Talk and Ted and Amy in the Morning. 93Q broadcasts on WNTQ-FM in the greater Syracuse region. 

The nearly 10 minute segment, which can be streamed below, runs from the start of the broadcast until around 9 minutes 47 seconds.

You can listen to White's full conversation on 93Q ...


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Full Transcript: 

Speaker1: [00:00:04] Welcome to Street Talk, a public affairs presentation of Cumulus Media, aired on our Cumulus stations in Syracuse. Street Talk is a weekly show keeping you in touch with individuals and organizations that work for and serve our community, we're your hosts, Ted and Amy. Central New York waterways are still busy in the winter months, with boating on open water and ice fishing on the frozen over lakes and rivers. But whether you're looking ahead to spring or enjoying the cold temperatures on the waterways, [00:00:30] Dave White of New York Sea Grant says safety and planning ahead should always be your number one priority.

Speaker2: [00:00:36] You know, this is a time, you know, I'm sure people are like me. They're looking out their window, going, Dave, there's snow on the ground, we should be talking about snowmobiling and ice fishing. You know, the reason I want to talk about it is it's in the season of COVID, we're not going to have boat shows as we normally have, where you're going to go to the fairgrounds or you maybe go to Clayton to theirs or over to Rochester. You know, we're not going to have [00:01:00] those kind of events. So, a lot of us are thinking of that. So, what can we do? And now I refer to it as let's be COVID creative. And for those folks that love to go to the boat show, for example, you know, why don't you think about taking a Saturday. It's gonna be a nice Saturday or Sunday. Throw the family in the car. Maybe you're your neighbors that you've been doing snowmobiling with and ice fishing with that our boaters, you know, loop the Lake or go up through the canal or up to Lake Ontario and stop at some of the marine dealers. Pop [00:01:30] in, say, hey, couldn't see you at the boat so I'm coming to you, what do you got new and take advantage of the opportunity to create your own boat show. The marine dealers would love to have folks come in. All the members of the Boating Industry Association, they're open. They've got product, they'd love to show people. They'd love to have you come sit on the boat, get a feel for it. And it'd be a great thing to do in February in place of going to a boat show, make your own and have a good time with it.

Speaker3: [00:01:57] Well, because, you know, the 2020 season, [00:02:00] no matter what you say about it, boating season for 2020 was awesome, right?

Speaker2: [00:02:05] Absolutely. And, you know, again, you know, in partnership with a whole lot of industry folks, they were able to get them open, they were essential service. But also it was a great opportunity. I mean, boating is COVID prep 101. I mean, you can do it. You know, you can you can be safe when you're launching and all those kind of things. So it was a great season. We have a tremendous number of new boaters coming in, which was wonderful to see. And [00:02:30] boating to me is all about the fun. And if you plan and prepare, it's all about fun on the water. Everybody's comfortable, everybody's feeling safe. We saw a lot of issues last summer that we're not a surprise because a lot of people were buying boats. They hadn't been on boats in a long time or or maybe never. So also, this is a great time to be thinking about boating safety that, again, we would normally get at the boat show with folks maybe talking with all our friends at the Coast Guard Auxiliary and the power squadron. You know, now may be the time to have the whole family do an online [00:03:00] boat safety class. Everybody's going to need to have taken a class by 2025 in order to operate a motorized boat in New York. So what a great opportunity, again, if we're if we're kind of, COVID stuck, if you will, in our houses, what a great family thing to do together.

Speaker2: [00:03:15] Have the kids take it. And mom and dad, grandma and grandpa. Whoever is going to be out on the boat. And again, I don't look at it like, "I got to take a safety class," like, "I take a safety class, it's going to make it more fun because everybody is going to feel more comfortable." So, you know, thinking about that. And then if you have [00:03:30] questions and you do do your own boat show, when you're stopping in you can ask the dealers questions. And the dealers are all connected with our Coast Guard auxiliary friends that they could say, hey, let me get you in contact with, you know, one of our friends at the auxiliary or the power squadron to get that question answered for this year so you're prepared for it. So it might be an odd time to think about it, but because people are going to miss those opportunities we want to make sure that we're getting that chance now before the season starts so that when the season is ready to go, which, you know, can be [00:04:00] any time from March on in central New York, they're ready to really get out there and have fun with it.

Speaker3: [00:04:05] I've got to tell you, I mean, you brought up the snow today. My husband and I were snowshoeing at one of the county parks right near the lake over the weekend, which, yes, it was cold and there was no ice fishermen out on the ice. And then we went about it. I swear it was less than a half mile away to the river and the river was running free. It's like people kind of have to be aware of [00:04:30] the ice, especially this time of year.

Speaker2: [00:04:33] They really do. And, you know, some areas have very good ice. And, you know, I'm seeing a lot of chatter out there. You know, how is the ice, I'm ready to go ice fishing? But you also, I mean, we had people three weeks ago that were out kayaking and canoeing in open water just because of the weather we've had. And it didn't freeze up. You know, and everybody has to remember that if you are on open water on a vessel, you have to have a life jacket on. It's not a question about that. Not only is it really safe, but [00:05:00] it is the law. But you really need to be thinking about that safety. And you know, I always talk about if you are over water, I don't care if you're on ice or in a boat, you really need to have some type of life jacket on or PFD or float coat because you never know when you're going to break through that ice, because right now, I mean, the ice is really still fragile in a lot of areas. We still have a lot of water flowing from the rain that we had earlier in the year and, you know, the open water.

Speaker2: [00:05:26] So, you know, you're right. And, it is central New York. And we have bodies [00:05:30] of water like the Salmon River and the Black River and others that are open year round. You know, that they're actually in the water fishing. So we have open water fishing at the same time we have ice fishing. You know, we have people out in kayaks and in paddleboards. The same time we have them sitting in ice shanties. So it's all a great part of central New York is a great part of what we love about being here. But you do have to think about it. And, you know, again, I always say all of these activities are so fun and by a little prep that can be more fun because you're relaxed and [00:06:00] you know you have all of your safety gear. You know you have all of your safety requirements. You know it's going to be a fun day. If something happens, you're prepared for it. That adds, to me, to the fun and the relaxation of it.

Speaker3: [00:06:11] Well, I know you were talking about, too, stopping by the marinas and talking to people, you know, a lot of those that are in the business or the bait stores and things like that. They can give you a lot of advice on ice and where is safe and things. Right. I mean, there's a lot of experts around that kind of are all about this kind of stuff.

Speaker2: [00:06:30] Oh, [00:06:30] absolutely. And they love to have you come in and, you know, even to pop in if you're not planning to buy something that day. But you're in the area, in the community, you know, the recreation industry. Tt's hospitality 101. You know, if you're coming to my area and you want to know about the ice, but you don't need to buy anything because you brought it all with you, stop in and say hello. I want to make sure you have a good opportunity because, you know, the bad opportunities are what gets the press as well. And, you know, we don't want to have somebody coming from outside the area that's not going to have a good experience. And [00:07:00] anybody within our industries is going to welcome you in the door. Sure. They hope you buy something, but information is free and that information is going to bring you back to my store. It's going to bring you back to central New York the next time. And you may say, hey, I'm not going to bring all that gear with me. I'm going to stop down to Amy's bait shop and pick up my stuff when I'm in town. I didn't even know, you know, she had one kind of thing, so. Yeah, I mean, and they love to talk about it. You know, you just have to plan extra time because as everybody knows, if you're talking boating or fishing or snowmobiling or snowshoeing, you better plan an [00:07:30] extra half hour if you're stopping someplace because you're going to be talking about it.

Speaker3: [00:07:35] Anything, David, that I'm not asking you about, that you want to talk about?

Speaker2: [00:07:39] You know, the only other thing that we did see last year that's really exciting and I love it. And, you know, being a lake guy, is a lot of boat parades. Boat parades became a big thing last year because they're exciting. It's fun. You decorate your boat, you're out with your lake buddies or your river buddies or your boat buddies, people that are planning those. Remember, it is [00:08:00] a parade. And you're taking people who and we saw a lot of this last year that were new to boating. Oh, I want to be part of the boat parade. They need a little help in understanding how do you operate a boat in a boat parade? How do you make sure you got distance and safety? You got the right gear. So it's just another thing we saw last year that we are going to start to talk to folks about. Lake associations that are starting to plan them, boating associations that are saying, oh, we want to have our yacht club, boat parade, whatever. Be thinking [00:08:30] about making sure everybody's very comfortable and understand what the rules and regulations are for being in a boat parade. You know, alcohol needs to be a little contained. You know, mind operator, you know, those kind of issues start to come into play.

Speaker2: [00:08:45] And, you know, everybody loves a good boat parade, the people in it and the people watching it. But we have a lot develop last year. Very exciting. Love them. Just a ton of fun. But those that are planning it and the key thing I say to them [00:09:00] is, well, think now about inviting our friends from the auxiliary or the power squadron. They are not regulatory. They are not law enforcement. They're there to educate. They can be real helpful with the boat parade just to be around, help those that are organizing the boat parade, get the right information to the right people, make sure everybody's having a really fun, safe time. And again, I always come back to: A boat parade can be a lot of fun as long as you don't have a problem. So let's plan to not have a problem, which makes it fun for everybody. It's relaxed. Everybody, I'm sure, loves it, everybody [00:09:30] in the parade loves it. So that's something we saw last year that we really want to build because, again, people out on the water builds that camaraderie. It's a great COVID safe activity to do. But we got to make sure that, you know, everybody's feeling good about it and safe about it.

Speaker1: [00:09:44] Learn more at NYSeaGrant.org.


Sound Clips from the Interview:

1: Make your own boat show, take a safety course, boat parade safety 2:10

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Full Transcript:

Speaker1: [00:00:00] Well, because of the pandemic, there are no boat shows this year, even though boating kind of took off because of the pandemic last summer. I mean, a ton of people bought boats. So Dave White is the coastal recreation and tourism specialist with New York Sea Grant. He says you and the family should kind of make your own boat show.

Speaker2: [00:00:20] You know, in the season of COVID, we're not going to have boat shows as we normally have, where you're going to go to the fairgrounds or you maybe go to Clayton to theirs or over to Rochester. You know, we're not going to have those kind of events. So, a lot of us are thinking of that. So, what can we do? And now I refer to it as let's be COVID creative. And for those folks that love to go to the boat show, for example, you know, why don't you think about taking a Saturday. It's gonna be a nice Saturday or Sunday. Throw the family in the car. Maybe you're your neighbors that you've been doing snowmobiling with and ice fishing with that our boaters, you know, loop the Lake or go up through the canal or up to Lake Ontario and stop at some of the marine dealers.  [00:01:00]

Speaker1: [00:01:00] Well, that's a nice idea. So there you go, make your own boat show. He also said, you know, if you want to take a safety course, like by 2022, anybody that is operating a boat has to take a safety course. It's not like younger than 16 or anything like that. So, you know, get the family involved and maybe I'll take a safety boating course when you're all home and it's kind of cold and it's not boating weather and you can get that done and then you'll be all set set for boating season. I do the next best thing, Amy. I have friends with boats, so [00:01:30] I don't have to worry about that stuff. So, there you go. I think just to be a passenger, you don't have to take a safety course. But it used to be is it 17 and younger or whatever, but that that requirement is changing, that everybody's got to take a safety course. Probably smart. I can see boaters, like "really I've been boating for 25 years. Really, I don't really think I need a safety course." I took one when I was a teenager, but like the whole buoy thing, I don't necessarily remember there's something on the right and something on the left. And, you know, I guess if I stayed between [00:02:00] the green and the red. Yeah, I guess, so, stay between them you're good. I should probably if I end up ever operating a boat, I should probably take a refresher course, another words.

2: Plan ahead with family for boat safety course and 2025 certification deadline 2:07

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Full Transcript:

Speaker1: [00:00:00] Well, because of the pandemic, there are no boat shows this year, this is usually a huge time for boat shows, even though boating took off because of the pandemic last summer. Dave White is the coastal recreation and tourism specialist with New York Sea Grant. He said now would be the time to plan ahead, though, for boating season.

Speaker2: [00:00:55] Now may be the time to have the whole family do an online boat safety class. Everybody's going to need to have taken a class by 2025 in order to operate a motorized boat in New York. So what a great opportunity, again, if we're if we're kind of, COVID stuck, if you will, in our houses, what a great family thing to do together. Have the kids take it. And mom and dad, grandma and grandpa. Whoever is going to be out on the boat. And again, I don't look at it like, "I got to take a safety class," like, "I take a safety class, it's going to make it more fun because everybody is going to feel more comfortable." So, if you have questions and you do do your own boat show, when you're stopping in you can ask the dealers questions. [00:00:30]

Speaker3: [00:00:56] I have to say, boating is probably the original social distancing, you [00:01:00] know, activity. Going out with just your little group.

Speaker1: [00:01:04] Right. And, marinas were able to open pretty early last season. They were one of the first ones, you know, when spring began and the waters were open for boating. So that's what Dave and we talked about this last hour. That's what Dave White was saying is since there's no boat shows, you know, the marinas, they're open all year regarding the inside people. So you can go in and talk to them and maybe look at the boats if you're looking or have any [00:01:30] kind of questions. And all of those people, too, are the professionals when it comes to the thickness of the ice and all that kind of stuff. So it's always good to talk to somebody, especially this time of year, because, you know, people are still using the open waterways for fishing and boating, and yet there's still ice fishing just down the waterway a piece. So it's always kind of good to know what you're what you're prepared for when you go on again.

Speaker3: [00:01:54] Again, I do the next best thing. I have friends with boats. So, yeah, that is that's no [00:02:00] fussin'

Speaker1: [00:02:01] No mussin', no cussin'.

3: Boating is a great social distancing activity, take a course 1:55


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Full Transcript:

Speaker1: [00:00:00] Well, because of the pandemic, there are no boat shows this year. This time of year is normally when you can go to the fairgrounds or up to, you know, the Thousand Islands has a big boat show. But even though boating kind of took off because of the pandemic last summer, Dave White, who is the coastal recreation and tourism specialist with New York Sea Grant, says the marinas are ready if you decide to make your own boat show and go visit them.

Speaker2: [00:00:53] In partnership with a whole lot of industry folks, they were able to get them open, they were essential service. But also it was a great opportunity. I mean, boating is COVID prep 101. I mean, you can do it. You know, you can you can be safe when you're launching and all those kind of things. So it was a great season. We have a tremendous number of new boaters coming in, which was wonderful to see. And boating to me is all about the fun. And if you plan and prepare, it's all about fun on the water. Everybody's comfortable, everybody's feeling safe. Yeah, [00:00:30] absolutely. That is like the original social distancing kind of activity.

Speaker1: [00:00:58] I think that was why [00:01:00] boating and RV-ing and all that kind of stuff really soared in popularity this past summer because you could just go off with your family and do it. And so, yeah, now is the time to plan. I thought it was 2022, but it's 2025 when everybody has to be certified if you are operating a boat. But Dave said this is also a great time of year to take that boating safety course and make sure you can do it as a family and do it at home, you know, do it virtually and then just be ready. But now is the time to start thinking about if [00:01:30] you want to buy a boat or you're upgrading or something, you probably should think about that soon because, you know, it was so it it was dog-eat-dog out there in the boating world last year, buying a boat and buying RV's and all that. And, even better, make friends with someone who owns a boat. You save a lot of money. You really do. Yes, I know. A pool and a boat and maybe even an RV. Get friends with all three. You'll be all set this summer. Done.

4: New boaters in 2020, life jacket message, check ice thickness if ice fishing 1:25

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Full Transcript:

Speaker1: [00:00:00] Well, the pandemic has been here for the last year, and if you think back to last summer, I betcha there were some friends that got a new boat, right? There's so many new boats and RVs and pools. I mean, everybody was doing that last year, but because of the pandemic, there's no boat shows that are going on that are normally this time of year. So let's see. Dave White, a coastal recreation and tourism specialist with New York Sea Grant, says, you can make your own boat show. I mean, the marinas are kind of the indoor people and you can talk to them. There [00:00:30] are also people that you can talk to if you're looking for, you know, conditions on the New York waterways.

Speaker2: [00:00:49] You are over water, I don't care if you're on ice or in a boat, you really need to have some type of life jacket on or PFD or float coat because you never know when you're going to break through that ice, because right now, I mean, the ice is really still fragile in a lot of areas. It is central New York. And we have bodies of water like the Salmon River and the Black River and others that are open year round. You know, that they're actually in the water fishing. So we have open water fishing at the same time we have ice fishing. You know, we have people out in kayaks and in paddleboards. The same time we have them sitting in ice shanties. So it's all a great part of central New York is a great part of what we love about being here. [00:01:00] All of these activities are so fun and by a little perhaps they can be more fun because you're relaxed.

Speaker1: [00:01:17] There you go. Yeah. It amazes me that people know enough about the ice to determine it's thick enough to go ice fishing.


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