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Contact:  Jay Culotta
Public Affairs Officer – Flotilla 42
985-845-9366

jay@jay-culotta.com
http://uscgaux-northlake.com

January 21, 2011

PRESS RELEASE:

Coast Guard Auxiliary places safe boating bulletin board in Madisonville

Boaters launching at Madisonville’s public boat ramp now have information that can save their lives. A big orange and white bulletin board is set up between the two ramps and contains boating safety information, loaner life jackets and a disposal container for discarded fishing line. The project is an initiative of the Coast Guard Auxiliary’s North Lake Flotilla 42. Inspired by an idea of USCG Captain Edwin M. Stanton, Sector New Orleans Commander, member Kristoffer Diel constructed the board, which is located at the ramps at the end of Lake Road in Madisonville. “The weatherproof bulletin board has information about the Auxiliary’s safe boating classes, free vessel safety checks, local aids to navigation, weather and other safety tips,” said Diel.  “Life jackets save lives, so the board has a selection of life jackets hanging on it which boaters can borrow before leaving the dock and return after their outing on the water. The public is also encouraged to leave life jackets there, if they are in good condition. A variety of sizes from infant to adult is needed.”

An integral part of the board is a disposal container for discarded fishing line. Monofilament left in the water or on the ground is extremely dangerous to birds, fish and other wildlife that become entangled in it. Unable to free themselves, they often suffer permanent damage or death.

The board was so well received at all levels of the CG Auxiliary and the USCG, that it was featured at the Coast Guard Innovation Expo in Tampa, FL in November 2010.

A Louisiana approved safe boating class is required by law for anyone born after January 1, 1984 who operates a watercraft with a greater than 10 horsepower motor. Flotilla 42 offers a state approved course once a month at several locations on the north shore from February through November.   Call Jay Culotta, Flotilla commander, at (985) 845-9366 for a schedule or check the calendar at http://uscgaux-northlake.com/2011-calendar.

Free boating safety checks will be offered at the same location during National Safe Boating Week, May 21-27, 2011. No appointment is necessary.

The U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary is the uniformed volunteer component of the United States Coast Guard created by an Act of Congress in 1939. The Auxiliary, America’s Volunteer Guardians, supports the Coast Guard in nearly all of the service’s missions.

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Madisonville Mayor Peter Gitz, Flotilla Commander Jay Culotta and Flotilla 42 Staff Officer (and board constructor) Kristoffer Diel dedicate the S.L.I.P. (Safe Lauch Information Project) bulletin board.

Contact:  Jay Culotta
Public Affairs Officer – Flotilla 081-04-02

985-845-9366
jay@jay-culotta.com
http://uscgaux-northlake.com

January 19, 2011

PRESS RELEASE:

About Boating Safely Course – Saturday, February 5th in Madisonville

By Jay Culotta
Flotilla 42 8CR USCGAUX

Instructors from the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary Flotilla 081-04-02 (Northlake) will conduct an About Boating Safely (ABS) course from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Madisonville Town Hall on Saturday, February 5, 2011.

Louisiana Law states that “No person born after January 1, 1984, shall operate a motorboat powered by a motor in excess of ten horsepower unless he has successfully completed a boating safety class approved by the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA).  A person who has completed an approved boating safety class shall be in possession of evidence of such completion when operating such a boat.” This law was  effective July 1, 2010 and estimates are that about 8,000 residents of the Northshore still need to complete an approved course.

This beginner boating class will give operators the knowledge needed to obtain a boat license or safety certification in many states, including Louisiana. In addition, many boat insurance companies will offer discounts (about 10%) on boating insurance to boaters who successfully complete About Boating Safely.

TOPICS INCLUDE

  • Introduction to Boating – Types of power boats; sailboats; outboards; paddle boats; houseboats; different uses of boats; various power boating engines; jet drives; family boating basics.
  • Boating Law – Boat registration; boating regulation; hull identification number; required boat safety equipment; operating safely and reporting accidents; protecting the marine environment; Federal boat law; state boating laws; personal watercraft requirements.
  • Boat Safety Equipment – Personal flotation devices (“life jackets”); fire extinguishers; sound-producing devices; visual-distress signals; dock lines and rope; first aid kit; anchors and anchor lines; other boating safety equipment.
  • Safe Boating – Alcohol and drug abuse; entering, loading, and trimming a boat; fueling portable and permanent tanks; docking, undocking and mooring; knots; filing a float plan; checking equipment, fuel, weather and tides; using charts; choosing and using an anchor; safe PWC handling; general water safety.
  • Navigation – The U.S. Aids to Navigation system; types of buoys and beacons; navigation rules (sometimes referred to as right-of-way rules); avoiding collisions; sound signals.
  • Boating Problems – Hypothermia; boating accidents and rescues; man overboard recovery; capsizing; running aground; hazards; emergency radio calls; engine problems; equipment failures; carbon monoxide (CO); other boating and PWC problems.
  • Trailering, Storing and Protecting Your Boat – Types of trailers; trailer brakes, lights, hitches, tires, and bearings; loading, balancing, and towing a trailer; towing (and backing) a trailer; boat launching and retrieving; boat storage and theft protection; launching.
  • Hunting and Fishing, Water-skiing and River Boating – Carrying hunting gear and weapons in a boat; fishing from a boat; water-skiing safety guidelines and hand signals; water-skiing with a PWC; navigating rivers, and other boating tips.

The course is not only for beginners; experienced boaters will also learn tips and safety techniques that will help them become better and safer boaters. Registration is $30.00 at the door, pre-registration is only $25,00. Multi-person discounts are also available. Details and registration can be found at our website, http://uscgaux-northlake.com under the tab CLASSES (About Boating Safely). Since class space is limited, pre-registration is highly encouraged. If you pre-register and are unable to attend the class, you will be able to attend another date in 2011 without penalty.

The need for this class is critical as Louisiana ranks fourth in the nation in total boating accidents, only behind California, Florida and Texas. Help the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary improve recreational boating safety because the life you save might be your own or someone you love. Remember, educated boaters and wearing life jackets save lives!

Those people who are not available for this class date can contact Jay Culotta for other dates in 2011.

###

The annual Madisonville Wooden Boat Festival took place last weekend (October 23 & 24) with thousands attending and enjoying the food, exhibits and of course, the wooden boats.

Flotillas 42 and 4-11 hosted the CG Auxiliary Tent and met dozens of potential new members, safe boating class students, boaters needing vessel safety checks and many former and present Auxiliary members stopping by to just say hello. Everyone had a great time and the weather was AWESOME!

For more on the fest, visit the official website.

http://www.woodenboatfest.org/

Enjoy these photos. (click on the thumbnail to view fullsize)

Freak Lake Taneycomo accident emphasizes importance of basic boating safety practices

October 6th, 2010 by Gary J. Groman

“A freak accident on Lake Taneycomo causing the death of an elderly man emphasizes the need for boaters to follow basic boating safety rules,” says Tammy Johnson, the Director of Operations for the Branson Tourism Center, one of Branson’s largest and most respected vacation planning services. “A large number of Branson visitors make Table Rock Lake or Lake Taneycomo a part of their vacation experience. Accidents, by their very nature are unpredictable, all we can do is follow basic safety procedures that will help mitigate their consequences.”

According to a KSDA Report, (St. Louis), the freak accident occurred at about the 1 mile marker on Lake Taneycomo when an 84 year old man traveling as a passenger in a small utility boat was thrown from the boat when it struck a wake and the operator lost control of the boat. The man drowned when his shirt got caught in the propeller preventing him from surfacing.

Johnson points out that a recent article by the Missouri Water Patrol entitled ” Missouri State Water Patrol urges safe boating practices over holiday weekend” contains a list of some excellent basic boating safety practices. The Missouri Water Patrol uses the term “Boat Smart” in discussing the basic boating safety practices that will enhance the chances that those using Missouri’s lakes and waterways will have a wonderful and safe experience.

Posted in Branson Outdoors, Outdoors |

These are the types of tragedies that are preventable with proper education. Take our About Boating Safely Course and learn how to properly operate your vessel.

Contact:  Jay Culotta
Flotilla Commander
Flotilla 42, District 8CR

985-845-9366

Jay@jay-culotta.com
http://uscgaux-northlake.com

September 27, 2010

PRESS RELEASE:

Louisiana required Boating Safety Course offered 3 times in October

By Jay Culotta
Flotilla 42, District 8CR USCG AUX

Instructors from the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary Flotilla 42 (Northlake) will conduct an “About Boating Safely” course from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Madisonville Town Hall on Saturday, October 9, 2010, at the Pontchartrain Yacht Club in Mandeville on Saturday, October 16, 2010 and at the Flotilla office on October 26, 2010.  Cost for the class is $30.00 at the door or $25.00 if registered before the class date.

Beginning July 1, 2010 marine law enforcement agencies (U.S. Coast Guard, La. Dept. of Wildlife & Fisheries and local agencies) began issuing citations for violation of the Louisiana law passed last year.

This law states: “No person born after January 1, 1984, shall operate a motorboat powered by a motor in excess of ten horsepower unless he has successfully completed a boating safety class approved by the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA).  A person who has completed an approved boating safety class shall be in possession of evidence of such completion when operating such a boat.”

The need for this class is critical in Louisiana, which ranks fifth in the nation in total boating (and fatal) accidents, only behind California, Florida, Michigan and Texas. In 2009, there were 26 fatal boating accidents which resulted in 33 fatalities, about one every two weeks. However, when alcohol was a contributing factor, Louisiana tied Florida at 17 for the most fatalities  in the country.

This boating safety class will give operators the knowledge needed to obtain a boat license or safety certification in many states, including Louisiana. In addition, many boat insurance companies will offer discounts (up to 20%) on boating insurance to those who successfully complete this course.

Among the many topics covered are how to know where you should be in relation to other vessels and which vessel has the right of way; how to read buoys and understand many navigation rules; proper use of navigation lights and anchors; how to safely fuel, load and unload your vessel; what to do in an emergency and how to summon help; proper use of fire extinguishers and flares; and many other skills needed by boaters on the waterways.

Further details and registration are at http://uscgaux-northlake.com/boating-safety-2/boating-safety. Since class space is limited, pre-registration is highly encouraged. If you pre-register and are unable to attend the class, you will be able to attend another date in 2010 without penalty.

Help the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary improve recreational boating safety and the life you save might be your own. See our calendar for other dates and locations in 2010 at http://uscgaux-northlake.com/2010-calendar.

Looking for a unique and thoughtful gift for Christmas?
Purchase a gift certificate for your child or grandchild for one of our boating safety classes. Contact us for further information.

###

Please read this and learn how you might prevent a fire on your boat.

The following is excerpted from the article referenced in the link below.

You’d think that a boat, surrounded and floating on water, would not necessarily be prone to fire. Furthermore, you’d think that a boat, once on fire, would be easy to put out with more than enough water readily available. However, if you’ve ever see a boat aflame or even worse had your own boat catch fire, you know fires aboard can easily happen and are very difficult to extinguish. One problem with a fire aboard a boat is that unlike a house where running across the street to escape the flames is an option, on a boat there’s no place to go but overboard. Unfortunately, this violates the second rule of boating: Stay with the boat. Ironically, if enough of what the boat is floating on can be brought into the boat, the fire can usually be put out. This, however, violates the first law of boating: Keep the water outside the boat.

Of course, preventing fires from starting to begin with is the best defense. By learning the top reasons why fires start can help you become aware of these factors on your own boat.

FIRE! Why Boats Catch Fire

Contact:  Jay Culotta
Flotilla Commander
Flotilla 42, District 8CR

985-845-9366
jay@jay-culotta.com

http://uscgaux-northlake.com

September 10, 2010

PRESS RELEASE:

Team Coordination Training – learning how to reduce mission errors

Last Saturday, September 4, 2010, 15 members of the Coast Guard Auxiliary from various flotillas in Division 4 of the Eighth Coastal Region attended an all-day training at the office of Norrhlake Flotilla 42 in Covington, Louisiana. The participants were instructed by William Wellemeyer, Flotilla 42 founder and an Auxiliary member for 35 years.

In the ongoing quest to improve boating safety and increase the skills of those who conduct the Search and Rescue (SAR) Missions, Safety Patrols, etc. the Coast Guard has developed proven techniques that reduce errors that primarily result from lack of or poor communication amongst the team members. Coast Guard and Auxiliary personnel frequently work together on these missions and differences in rank can be intimidating to mission participants who have not been properly trained to speak up when there is a problem or potential problem.

Subjects covered are Effective Leadership, Effective Mission Analysis, Adaptability and Flexibility, Situational Awareness, Decision-Making, Effective Communication and Assertiveness.

For more information on how you can join the Coast Guard Auxiliary and help increase boating safety, please visit this LINK.

The U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary is the uniformed volunteer component of the United States Coast Guard. Created by an Act of Congress in 1939, the Auxiliary directly supports the Coast Guard in all missions, except military and law enforcement actions.


###

We seem to forget sometimes that extreme heat is dangerous, especially if we do not drink enough fluids to replace what we are losing. If you can, take a First Aid class and learn more detailed information about heat cramps, heat exhaustion and heat stroke. Heat stroke is life threatening and needs to be taken very seriously.

Here are two Coast Guard presentations on these heat related conditions and how to treat them.

Heat Dangers (TEXT)

Heat Dangers (slide show)

Ten more students became safe boaters after completing a boating class on Saturday, August 28, 2010. They now know more about safe boating than 95% of those on the water, including lifetime boaters who have never had a Safe Boating Class.

Public Education Staff Officer Kris Diel conducted the eight-hour class, with Flotilla Commander Jay Culotta observing and learning from this experienced life-long boater and marine safety expert. Shad Weathersby, John Fredericks, Jacob Fredericks, Ronald and Mary Ann Dyer, Robert and Kim Gwinn, Phyllis Mayo, Kenneth Murphy and Joshua Mason joined the other 71 About Boating Safely graduates of Northlake Flotilla classes. We have now trained 81 safe boaters in 2010.

Among the many topics covered were how to know where you should be in relation to other vessels and which vessel has the right of way; how to read buoys and understand many navigation rules; proper use of navigation lights and anchors; how to safely fuel, load and unload your vessel; what to do in an emergency and how to summon help; proper use of fire extinguishers and flares; and many other skills needed by boaters to prevent collisions and survive mishaps. Students were also given detailed information on the CG Auxiliary’s Vessel Safety Checks, a free program that inspects your boat to make sure it complies with necessary Coast Guard, federal and state requirements.

If you or anyone you know needs instruction on becoming a safe boater, further details and registration are at http://uscgaux-northlake.com/boating-safety-2/boating-safety. Since class space is limited, pre-registration is highly encouraged. If you pre-register and are unable to attend the class, you will be able to attend another date in 2010 without penalty.

Help the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary improve recreational boating safety and the life you save might be your own. See our calendar for other dates and locations in 2010 at http://uscgaux-northlake.com/2010-calendar.

From the St. Tammany News

Two unlucky crabbers sit in the bow of the St. Tammany Sheriff’s boat after deputies extinguished the fire of the boat. (Photo by Sgt. Greg Gonzales of the St. Tammany Sheriff’s Office)

Two Slidell men didn’t have much luck crabbing Thursday afternoon in Lake Pontchartrain about a mile from shore near the U.S. Highway 11 bridge.

The boat used by the commercial crabbers caught fire around 1 p.m. according to Capt. George Bonnett, spokesman for the St. Tammany Sheriff’s Office. Dispatchers got several 911 calls from motorists on the bridge, and deputies with the Sheriiff’s Office Marine Division responded in three boats.

Also, Bonnett said the Sheriff’s Office helicopter was on its way to the Northshore Harbor Center to take part in the East St. Tammany Business and Community Showcase spotted the fire and headed to the are to give assistance

While one of the Sheriff’s boats rescued the two fishermen from the lake waters, another boat, equipped with firefighting equipment quickly extinguished the crabber’s boat fire.

Bonnett said both men suffered minor injuries, but they refused any medical attention.

According to the crabbers, the fire on the boat was caused by faulty wiring. Bonnett said the two men tried to put out the fire themselves, but they ran into a problem.

“They either grabbed a container that contained both fuel and water, or there was traces of fuel that got mixed with the water,” Bonnett said.

As a result, the fire just spread faster, and both fishermen were forced to jump into the lake.

The boat was declared a total loss.

The About Boating Safety Class could have prevented this either from happening in the first place or in helping these gentlemen to know which fire extinguisher (and how many) to have on board.

Save your life and your boat by taking a Boating Safety Class.