On Air: NYSG Celebrates 50 Years of Coastal Science; "Wear Your Lifejacket Season" Kicks Off
Great Lakes Boating & Marine Trades - News

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

Oswego, NY, October 27, 2021 - As New York Sea Grant kicks off a year-long celebration in honor of its 50th Anniversary, its Coastal Recreation and Tourism Specialist, Dave White, stops by for a chat. 

White also spoke with WDOE News Director Dave Rowley about boating safety tips, including the annual WearIt! life jacket campaign, during this recent a call-in appearance. 

WDOE 1040 AM / 94.9 FM's "Viewpoint" program, which is broadcast in the greater Syracuse and Oswego regions. 

Viewpoint airs on WDOE Monday through Friday at 8:45am. Dave Rowley has been handling the hosting duties for more than 20 years, interviewing local, county and state elected officials. Community groups are also featured on the 15-minute live interview show. Listeners email their questions to Dave, who includes those inquires in the interviews.

You can also listen to the entire "Viewpoint" program featuring Dave White of New York Sea Grant ...


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Full Transcript: 

Speaker1: [00:00:00] Time now for Viewpoint.

Speaker2: [00:00:01] Here is WDOE news director Dave Rowley.

Speaker1: [00:00:04] And welcome to Viewpoint with us on our live line. We have from New York Sea Grant, the Coastal Recreation and Tourism Specialist Dave White. Dave, welcome to the program.

Speaker3: [00:00:19] Well, thank you very much. And good morning and happy anniversary to New York Sea Grant. We were actually started 50 years ago today as a partnership of SUNY and Cornell. So today we kick [00:00:30] off our next 50 years of what we call bringing science to the shore.

Speaker1: [00:00:34] Yeah, that's that's great. I didn't realize that. Congratulations.

Speaker3: [00:00:40] Yup. Yup. It's you know, it's it's it's a milestone, as I've said to folks I've celebrated I've been here 37 years. So I've celebrated a lot a lot of anniversaries with the program. And, you know, it just continues to provide an opportunity. And working with folks like you to get information out on how we can best, you know, live, work, play, preserve, conserve our great coast [00:01:00] and our great waterways here in western New York.

Speaker1: [00:01:03] And we sure have a lot of waterways. Lake Erie being one of the most popular Chautauqua Lake here in Chautauqua County. Now, paddling has become such a big sport, but there is a deadline coming up, a very important date that people should keep in mind if you're a paddler and [00:01:30] use watercraft.

Speaker3: [00:01:33] Oh, absolutely. And I think you and I have talked before, and I'm an advocate being a tourism and recreation person, that, you know, summer doesn't end until at least Columbus Day. And, you know, as you look around right now, a lot of marinas, a lot of boat launch ramps, there are a lot of folks out boating, including folks from paddle sports right on up through fishing activity, hunting activity. November 1st starts the annual, if you will, where it campaign of really promoting [00:02:00] that you have to wear your life jacket when you're out on the water on any type of vessel. You know, it's a beautiful day. It's going to be 60 degrees, but the water starts getting cooler and there's also fewer people out on the water. So, you know, it's just a really good safety precaution. You know, obviously during the summer, boating 12 and under have to wear the life jacket. But now that we're getting into fall and winter boating, everybody on board any kind of vessel. I defined a vessel, if you can ride on it or in it, you need to have a life [00:02:30] jacket on. It's just good common sense, especially this time of year when we're starting to get the cooler water and also fewer folks out on the water.

Speaker1: [00:02:37] Now, what type of life jacket for people that may not be familiar, especially when we talk about paddling. What type of life jacket should we consider?

Speaker3: [00:02:50] You know, there's there's a whole variety out there. And everybody has their own need, desire as to what kind of life jacket they want to have. Now, I'm [00:03:00] not sure we've ever met in person, but I'm going to guess we're probably of the same ilk that we grew up with, what I call the old orange ugly, which was the, you know, the orange one you put around your neck and everybody needed to wear. You know, now you can get them to match your eyes, match your swimsuit, match your boat, you know, whatever you might want to get. And obviously, the most popular is the Type Three, you know, and the Type Three provides impact if you're going to hit if you hit the water. But also it keeps you afloat, helps keep some body warmth in, you know. So [00:03:30] it Type Three is what we see a lot of folks wearing this time of year. It's the very common one that folks will have. Inflatables are becoming more popular, but you have to be cautious with inflatables that, you know, if you fall overboard in cold water, it can really shock your system and you might not be able to inflate it. But there's also automatic ones, which if you're out fishing in a sixteen foot boat and you fell overboard by accident, it will automatically inflate. So there's some really cool product out there. [00:04:00] And the other thing I have to mention is, as we're going later into the year, you can also get what's called a float coat or a float suit, and the float coat is just, it's a big coat, but it has a life jacket built into it. And a float suit is basically a pair of coveralls designed to be in the water an a life jacket is built into them. So they provide great protection. They provide great warmth and great peace of mind. So there's some really cool product out there people can be thinking about.

Speaker1: [00:04:28] Now, this is also [00:04:30] a very good time to consider perhaps if you're looking at a motorized boat, this really is a good time of the year to start looking.

Speaker3: [00:04:42] You know, it really is. It's a great time to start connecting with, you know, our local marine dealers, you know, right here in, you know, western New York that are members of the western New York Marine Trade Association. Better be it up on Lake Erie, Niagara River, down in Chautauqua Lake. You know, they're really there to help you begin to think through what you want a boat for and that really, [00:05:00] you know, and this is a great time of year. You know, if you've been out with your friends boating over the summer, you know, there's always, it's the best boat in the world is a friends boat we all know that. But if you're really now thinking about getting your own family boat, what did you enjoy doing on their boat and what would your family want to do on yours? And that that starts right from a kayak canoe all the way on up, because, you know, if you're going to look to getting a kayak, do you want a one or two person? How would your family utilize a kayak? You know, going out as a family adventure where you want to have two people in it, you [00:05:30] you know, are you going to use it for fishing? Because if so, you might want to get one that's more designed for fishing that has rod holders in it, a place to put your tackle that's safe and secure.

Speaker3: [00:05:39] So even if you're, you know, no matter what size you're thinking of powerboat, sailboat, kayak, canoe, what would you and or your family want to be using it for? And then your local Marine dealer can really begin to help you think through. So would you want to pontoon would you want a V hull do you want a small cabin? They can really help you think about what kind of boat you want to have that will accommodate [00:06:00] all of your family needs. So that's a really important and now's a great time here to be thinking about that because it's fresh in your mind of what do you enjoy doing out on the water as a family and almost do an inventory so you can make sure you get a boat that's going to accommodate as much of that as possible.

Speaker1: [00:06:15] And it's probably important to start thinking about it now. We've heard so much about the pandemic and there's been such a demand for watercraft, period.

Speaker3: [00:06:28] Oh, absolutely. I mean, boating is [00:06:30] no different than everything else we're talking about. Supply, demand, you know, issues that are occurring, boating is the same. So, yeah, if you're thinking about, you know, I'd like to get a new boat next year. Now is the time to be going down and see the dealers. You know, I talked about it, I think early in the season. You know, create your own boat show, go to two or three dealers, chat with them about what's the opportunities are, when might they be able to get you product, especially if you want to order one specific to yourself. I want a certain color, I want a certain style. You're going to want to get those ordered now for [00:07:00] delivery next spring. Obviously, if you're you know, you're thinking of a used boat again, talk to your local Marine dealer because a lot of folks utilize them for brokerage services. So, again, talking to them now to say, hey, my family would like to have a boat come next spring, we're thinking we'd like to have a 21 foot cuddy cabin inboard outboard, because as they're talking with other folks and other dealers, they can see what they can find for you. So now is a great time to be thinking about that. Also be thinking about if you are a boater, what [00:07:30] equipment did you need to replace? Again, it's kind of an inventory as I'm putting the boat away, you know, geez, next year I'm going to need a new depth gauge next year I'm going to need some new life jackets. Christmas is coming up with great things to put on your Christmas list. And like everybody said, get them ordered now, you get them in. You know, again, your local marine supply store can work with you to, you know, to get you equipped. And, you know, great Christmas gifts for folks is what are they going to need for the boating season come next year?

Speaker1: [00:07:55] Yeah. Speaking of holiday gifts, anything in particular [00:08:00] that you see as perhaps a high demand item?

Speaker3: [00:08:06] You know, the past couple of years, almost everything on boats has become high demand again. You know, it's part of a supply demand chain that we're we're seeing systemically across the system. You know, and as you know, the captain of the boat you can be looking at, am I going to need a new fire extinguisher? Am I going to need new flares? You know, there are certain requirements that you have on a boat that you have to have your flares get outdated, you know, so if your flares are going to [00:08:30] be outdated come next June, you know, again, add it to the Christmas list or, you know, get it on the list now to be thinking about you're going to want to get some of those things sooner rather than later so you don't get caught in that bind next year. You know do you need any new life jackets? You know, you know, do you need to do any repairs on the boat? All of those things that as you're putting the boat away this year, you can be thinking about, you know, normally you would do the checklist and come next March, you'd start your quest for getting new product or whatever it might be.

Speaker3: [00:08:59] I do that now. [00:09:00] There's no reason to wait, you know, that way also, if it's on backorder, you can make sure you're going to get it in time for the boating season. You know, there were people this past year that, you know, waited until April. Oh, I need to go down to the store and pick some stuff up. They weren't able to get it, which then delays their ability to get out boating. So those are all good things. It's a little different for us. We normally don't think about some of that stuff now, but now's a great time to be thinking about it. And wouldn't it be great to get a box in February from your local, you know, marine supply dealer? A boating product [00:09:30] is to get you excited for the season, you know, so you can actually, you know, be thinking about you. It might be backordered. They don't need it until next April but wow, when I open that box in February, it's going to get me excited about, okay, you know, winter's going to end at a point in time. Boating season will be coming back.

Speaker1: [00:09:45] Now, let me also ask you, you touched on it a little bit about used boats. If someone is not in the market for a new boat, but maybe looking around, what should people keep in mind? When their [00:10:00] shopping.

Speaker3: [00:10:02] Again, it goes to what are you going to want that boat for? So you've done the full family inventory trying to find a boat that will match you, but also the trailer. A lot of folks don't think about. It's much more about the boat and you know, we're all about that. But the trailer, is it in good shape? The tires, the electronics on it, the lights, the hitch. So, you know, it's the whole package you have to look at. You know, what? What do you want to use the boat for? What kind of engine is going to be the best engine for you? Outboard inboard, [00:10:30] outboard solar, electric. I mean, you know, we're all going in different directions. But don't forget the trailer because a lot of folks, you know, bypass that. So you want to also look at the trailer, you know, and also be thinking about the vehicle that you have to tow it. You know, make sure you check your vehicle to say, okay, my vehicle, you know, I can only tow so much weight. You know, make sure you're taking that into account when you're thinking about the boat as well because, you know, again, to buy a boat now and then you go to pick it up next March and you go, I can't [00:11:00] tow that with my vehicle. My vehicle is not the right size. So those are all things you need to be taking into account new or used. But definitely used is, you know, the condition of the boat. You might want it like you would with a used car. Maybe you want to take it to a local marine dealer to have it checked out to make sure you know it is safe, meets all the specs and is in good condition. So, you know, think about the same things you would do when buying a used car. You want to do the same thing with a used boat.

Speaker1: [00:11:26] Now, Dave, you mentioned about solar. Are we seeing [00:11:30] more boaters going in the direction of solar and electric powered boats?

Speaker3: [00:11:38] We're not seeing a lot of solar up here just because of the size of the boat you're seeing them out. But in larger bodies of water, you're starting to see, you know, where you know, you've got the cover over the helm they can actually put solar panels on. So they're doing a lot of look at that right now for some of the larger vessels. But what is available right now at the higher horsepower that is becoming much newer is electric [00:12:00] motors at a higher horsepower, but also propane. I mean, I've worked I was demonstrating with the company on my clean and safe boat, a propane engine. And you actually took one of like the camp canister that you would use for your camp stove and you screwed it actually into the top of the engine. And it ran on propane. No, no emission and extremely quiet. So, again, there's a lot of really neat options coming out there. And those options are now all becoming in higher horsepower for folks that, you know, want to be able to use the boat for multiple [00:12:30] purposes, including skiing, cruising. So you're now beginning to see electric motors and propane engines both become much higher horsepower and are now becoming a viable option for boats.

Speaker1: [00:12:41] What kind of range do you get that a can of propane about?

Speaker3: [00:12:46] Yeah, again, you know, depending on the type of boating you want it also you can put a, you know, traditional and I just use the word, you know, grill, you know, if you've got your grill at home, your traditional propane tank, you can actually utilize that as well. So [00:13:00] depending on what you're using your boat for, but, you know, the smaller engines are, you know, I'm going to pop out and go fishing and pop back. So you're not you know, when you think about it, you're not using a lot of times you're on your boat a long time, but it's only running for a very short period of time, you know? So if you're going out for a day of boating, a lot of times people, they take 10 minutes to go out. They spend 8 hours out on the water and they take 10 minutes to go back. So your engine is not running that long in reality and depending on the manufacturer and they [00:13:30] can tell you exactly, okay, this is how long it will last. And again, it's like having a campground. You always have you always have a spare just in case you do run out. So depending on the manufacturer that's there, depending on the size, all of those things have to be taken into account. But it's really becoming an option for folks to be looking at.

Speaker1: [00:13:47] Well, Dave, speaking of running out, we're running out of time. We got maybe a minute left, but how can people get more information about boating? And again, [00:14:00] if you're in the market for a new kayak or a boat, where can you go?

Speaker3: [00:14:05] You know, great place to go New York State Parks has a great website for boating safety classes, understanding what equipment you need. If you need a refresher to look through the book their guidebooks are all online, so New York State Parks provides a wealth of information. Also, your local marine dealer association, western New York Marine Dealers Association lists all of their dealers what their product is. And again, using your favorite search engine, you know, pop in the type of boat you're thinking of and [00:14:30] start to look at it. It'll show you all of your local dealers, you know, who's down on Chautauqua, Erie, you know, any one of the inland bodies of water up in the Niagara area that you can begin to think about. And then, you know, you know, on a nice, you know, Saturday afternoon, maybe it's worth popping down. They're open year round. They would love to have you walk in the showroom floor, show you what they have, but also talk about what you're going to want and what you're going to need. So, you know, the opportunity is there and it's something to be thinking about as we go into fall for folks to be safe, have fun on the water, which is what [00:15:00] you know, as you and I know that's what it's all about is people going out having a good time because you will find no place in the world like western New York, Central New York for the waterways that we have.

Speaker1: [00:15:10] Well, Dave, thanks for joining us on our lifeline.

Speaker3: [00:15:14] All right. Always great to chat with you. And you have a great day.

Speaker1: [00:15:16] You, too.

Viewpoint airs on WDOE Radio Dunkirk Monday through Friday at 8:45am. Dave Rowley has been handling the hosting duties for more than 20 years, interviewing local, county and state elected officials. Community groups are also featured on the 15-minute live interview show. Listeners can email their questions to Dave and he will include them in the interviews.

More Info: New York Sea Grant

New York Sea Grant (NYSG), a cooperative program of Cornell University and the State University of New York (SUNY), is one of 34 university-based programs under the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Sea Grant College Program.

Since 1971, NYSG has represented a statewide network of integrated research, education and extension services promoting coastal community economic vitality, environmental sustainability and citizen awareness and understanding about the State’s marine and Great Lakes resources.

Through NYSG’s efforts, the combined talents of university scientists and extension specialists help develop and transfer science-based information to many coastal user groups—businesses and industries, federal, state and local government decision-makers and agency managers, educators, the media and the interested public.

The program maintains Great Lakes offices at Cornell University, SUNY Buffalo, SUNY Oswego and the Wayne County Cooperative Extension office in Newark. In the State's marine waters, NYSG has offices at Stony Brook University in Long Island, Brooklyn College and Cornell Cooperative Extension in NYC and Kingston in the Hudson Valley.

For updates on Sea Grant activities: www.nyseagrant.org has RSS, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube links. NYSG offers a free e-list sign up via www.nyseagrant.org/nycoastlines for its flagship publication, NY Coastlines/Currents, which is published quarterly.

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