Print Page | Contact Us | Report Abuse | Sign In | Register
Boating Safety News
Blog Home All Blogs

Thousands Learn Life Jacket Safety Lessons at Miami Boat Show

Posted By Gail Kulp, Monday, February 24, 2020

Thousands Learn Life Jacket Safety Lessons at Miami Boat Show

The Sea Tow Foundation has announced that more than 86,000 individuals visited this year’s Progressive Insurance Miami International Boat Show to see the new boats and boating gear and the Sea Tow Foundation made sure that the attendees received a quick course in the importance of wearing life jackets when on or around the water.

As a result of the show’s captive audience, tens of thousands of boating enthusiasts interacted with staff and volunteers from the Sea Tow Foundation, and nearly 500 of those decided to spend extra time learning more about life jackets. Additionally, 365 children borrowed life jackets for the day while they perused the docks and took part in the sea trials that were available.

For the 5th straight year, the Sea Tow Foundation hosted Life Jacket Loaner Stations at the show, which became the organization’s epicenter for education. All of the Foundation’s life jackets were made available from a generous donation from Onyx and the space for the life jacket loaner stations was provided by the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA). Volunteers from local schools, businesses and other organizations staffed the Life Jacket Loaner Stations and assisted the Sea Tow Foundation staff in fitting children with life jackets before they ventured onto the docks with their families.

In order to further promote the importance of life jacket use, the Sea Tow Foundation launched its first-ever Life Jacket Selfie Giveaway Contest at this year’s show. Through partnerships with NMMA, Onyx, FELL Marine, FishGillz, Navionics, Source4 and Formula Boats, the Sea Tow Foundation gave away five prize packs valued at $3,600 to  participants who took a selfie while wearing one of the Sea Tow Foundation life jackets at the boat show and posting that photo to social media using the hashtag #LifeJackets4theWin and tagging the Sea Tow Foundation. The contest saw more than 100 people participate in the five days that the contest was open and winners of the prize packs were randomly selected from the social media posts.

“Overall, this year’s Miami International Boat Show was our most successful yet,” said Gail R. Kulp, the Sea Tow Foundation’s executive director. “Not only were we able to interact with 100,000 attendees and teach nearly 500 individuals about life jacket use, we also engaged with countless numbers of boaters, both at the show and watching at home, through our inaugural life jacket selfie contest. We couldn’t be more thrilled with the way things turned out.”

The  Life Jacket Loaner Stations at this year’s boat show are part of the Sea Tow Foundation’s nationwide Life Jacket Loaner Program, which hosts more than 600 loaner stations across 43 states. The Sea Tow Foundation also offers other pop-up life jacket loaner stations at the Tampa, FL Boat Show and the Norwalk, CT Boat Show in addition to the stations featured at the Miami International Boat Show.

 

Tags:  2020  Boating Safety  Contest  Giveaway  Life Jacket Selfie  Press Release  Prizes 

Share |
PermalinkComments (0)
 

Life Jacket Selfie Contest to be held at Miami International Boat Show

Posted By Gail Kulp, Monday, February 10, 2020
Updated: Monday, February 24, 2020

Life Jacket Selfie Contest to be held at Miami International Boat Show

(Southold, NY) The Sea Tow Foundation has announced it will be launching a selfie giveaway contest at the 2020 Progressive Insurance Miami International Boat Show that will help educate boat lovers of all ages on the importance of wearing life jackets. PRESS RELEASE

Through partnerships with the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA), Onyx Outdoor, FELL Marine, FishGillz, Navionics, Source4 and Formula Boats, the Sea Tow Foundation will be giving away five prize packages valued at $3,600 to Miami International Boat Show attendees and boaters watching from home.

To participate in the contest, the Sea Tow Foundation is asking Miami International Boat Show attendees to stop by its Life Jacket Loaner Stations located at piers 2 and 5 to try on an Onyx life jacket and take a selfie while wearing it in front of the station. Attendees are also welcome to borrow the life jackets to walk the docks and take them out on the water during the sea trails.

Those who are unable to attend the Miami International Boat Show can still enter to win by downloading and printing a graphic from the Sea Tow Foundation’s online store and taking a selfie with this print-out.

Contestants must then upload their photos to Facebook or Instagram, tag the Sea Tow Foundation @SeaTowFoundation, and use the hashtag #LifeJackets4theWin. One winner will be chosen at random each day of the show – February 14-17 – to win a prize pack with one additional winner being chosen from the at-home audience at the end of the week.

Each prize pack is valued at over $700 and includes:

  • An Impulse A-24 In-Sight Automatic Inflatable life jacket from Onyx Outdoor
  • FELL Marine’s MOB+ Wireless Man Overboard engine cutoff system
  • 4 Tickets to next year’s Miami International Boat Show, courtesy of NMMA
  • A pair of floating, polarized FishGillz Sunglasses
  • A duffel bag from Source 4
  • A Navionics Boating Charts App

The Sea Tow Foundation extends special thanks to Formula Boats for its generous donation that will be used to offset shipping costs of the prize packs to each of the winners.

Gail R. Kulp, the Sea Tow Foundation’s executive director, said it’s great to see so many within the boating industry rally behind the Sea Tow Foundation.

“We’re thrilled to have received so much support from our partners within the boating industry,” Kulp said. “Our giveaway contest will be a great way to get boaters’ attention and help continue to educate the public that boating can be safe and fun.”

The Sea Tow Foundation’s Life Jacket Loaner Stations available to Miami International Boat Show attendees are part of the Foundation’s nationwide Life Jacket Loaner Program, which hosts more than 600 stations on waterways throughout the country where boaters can borrow and return life jackets at no charge. In addition, the Sea Tow Foundation also operates the Sober Skipper Program, which encourages boaters to make the decision to be or to designate a drug and alcohol-free operator for their boats before every trip.

For a full list of contest rules and to see photos of the prizes, click here.

 

 

 

Tags:  2020  Boating Safety  Contest  Giveaway  Life Jacket Selfie  Press Release  Prizes 

Share |
PermalinkComments (0)
 

Sea Tow Foundation Announces Inaugural Winners of “National Boating Industry Safety Awards”

Posted By Michael Wesolowski, Monday, December 2, 2019
Updated: Friday, March 6, 2020

Sea Tow Foundation Announces Inaugural Winners of “National Boating Industry Safety Awards”

Southold, NY, December 2, 2019 – The Sea Tow Foundation recently announced winners of its inaugural National Boating Industry Safety Awards at the Elevate Summit in Orlando. The awards were sponsored and judged by the newly established North American Sober Skipper Advisory Council and funded through a grant from the Sport Fish Restoration & Boating Trust Fund, administered by the U.S. Coast Guard. The awards were established to recognize the best boating safety work in the for-profit sector of the recreational marine marketplace occurring within the United States.

The Top Marine Manufacturer Award for Boating Safety was presented to Sea Ray Boats. Sea Tow Foundation Executive Director Gail R. Kulp said, “Sea Ray Boats launched an effective and highly targeted email and social media marketing campaign over the summer boating holiday weekends and promoted several boating safety initiatives including the importance of boaters wearing life jackets at all times; practicing responsible drinking and having a designated captain; and staying alert and being aware of surroundings.”

Taking the Top Marine Retailer Award for Boating Safety was MarineMax, a company which has long championed boating safety among boating consumers. Kulp noted, “From the development of hands-on boating safety classes to the production of safety-focused videos, MarineMax is providing outstanding educational opportunities for new boaters as well as those in need of a refresher. In addition, the MarineMax social media posts consistently promoted additional awareness about boating safety through ongoing messages via multiple platforms.”

The Sober Skipper National Advisory Council also created a category to recognize the best work of marine media in promoting boating safety. This year’s winner of the Top Marine Media Award for Boating Safety was Bonnier Corporation whose broad boating safety initiatives and editorial content were reflected in multiple boating consumer titles that reach thousands of readers and recreational boating enthusiasts. “Bonnier Corporation is awarded the top marine media award because they did a great job developing and publishing exceptional safe boating editorial and video content; demonstrated evidence of outreach via extensive data collection; plus hosted a multi-faceted boating safety campaign that crossed print, email and social media channels with entire editions of publications focused on boating safety,” said Kulp.

The Top Marine Marketing and Boating Safety Outreach Award was won by Yamaha Outboards. Said Kulp, “Yamaha tapped Hunter Bland, a respected professional angler and influencer, to deliver spot-on boating safety messages that reached a targeted group of youth and young anglers. The grassroots campaign featured live special events coupled with branded campaign video and social media components.”

In addition, a newly established Sober Skipper Award was presented by the Sea Tow Foundation to Freedom Boat Club in recognition of its outstanding adoption and promotion of the Sober Skipper program. The largest and oldest boat club in North America with more than 185 locations, Freedom Boat Club advocates for boating safety by asking each member at every dock to identify a designated Sober Skipper before departure. While this initiative has reportedly saved Freedom Boat Club thousands of dollars in boat damage and liability costs, it has no doubt saved the lives of members and their friends, while allowing them to maximize and enjoy their time on the water. “We have worked closely with Freedom Boat Club over the past three years and the company has demonstrated just how easy and effective it is to incorporate the Sober Skipper message into its business model,” said Kulp. “We are pleased to establish this new award to recognize the outstanding work of our partners like Freedom Boat Club who actively and successfully promote boating safety and specifically, the Sober Skipper message.”

Added Kulp, “The National Sober Skipper Advisory Council and the Sea Tow Foundation are very pleased by the caliber of candidates and the submissions received for our first awards recognition. We are all delighted to see the great work being done by recreational boating industry organizations and look forward to continuing to support and bring well deserved recognition to outstanding achievers and safe boating champions throughout the recreational marine industry.”

For more information about the North American Sober Skipper Advisory Council and the National Boating Industry Safety Awards, please visit the Sober Skipper website at www.soberskipper.com

Winners of the 2019 National Boating Industry Safety Awards presented at the Elevate Summit are pictured from left to right starting with Gail Kulp, Sea Tow Foundation Executive Director who presented the awards. Hunter Bland, winner of the Marketing & Outreach Award for Yamaha Outboards. Kevin Falvey and John McEver, winner of the Media Award for Bonnier Corporation. Barry Slade and Nic Thomas, winner of the Sea Tow Foundation’s Sober Skipper Award presented to Freedom Boat Club. Sara Fahy, winner of the Manufacturer Award for Sea Ray Boats. Capt Keith Lake, winner of the Retail Award for Marine Max.

Members of the Sea Tow Foundation’s North American Sober Skipper Advisory Council include David Connolly, Thomas H. Connolly and Sons; David Dickerson, NMMA; Jim Emmons, Water Sports Foundation; Kevin Falvey, Bonnier/Boating Magazine; Mike Hankins, Crevalle Boats; John Jost, Ken Cook Company; Captain Keith Lake, MarineMax; Dave Marlow, Brunswick Corporation; Captain Frank Stoeber, Regal Boats; Nic Thomas, Freedom Boat Club; Stephanie Vatalaro, RBFF; Annamarie Worrell, Emerald Coast Marine Group. The council’s executive Media Contact Gail R. Kulp, Executive Director Sea Tow Foundation 631-876-5077; gail@boatingsafety.com © 2018 Sea Tow Foundation. All rights reserved. committee includes Kristen Frohnhoefer, Sea Tow Services International; Gail R. Kulp and Michael Wesolowski, Sea Tow Foundation; and Wanda Kenton Smith, Kenton Smith Marketing.

Suggested Tweet and Facebook Post: Four winners have been announced for the inaugural National Boating Industry Safety Awards from Sea Tow Foundation including Sea Ray Boats, MarineMax, Bonnier Corporation and Yamaha Outboards. Freedom Boat Club received the Sober Skipper Award. Info: www.soberskipper.com

Media Contact Gail R. Kulp, Executive Director Sea Tow Foundation 631-876-5077; gail@boatingsafety.com © 2018 Sea Tow Foundation. All rights reserved.

 

 

Tags:  MarineMax  NASSAC  Press Release  Sea Ray Boats  Sea Tow  Sober Skipper  Yamaha Outboard 

Share |
PermalinkComments (0)
 

Sea Tow Foundation’s Sober Skipper Program is Saving Lives

Posted By Gail Kulp, Thursday, November 7, 2019
Updated: Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Sea Tow Foundation’s Sober Skipper Program is Saving Lives

The Sea Tow Foundation has announced the 2017-2018 grant findings for its Sober Skipper program. First launched in 2015 and now in more than 180 cities across 51 states and territories, the program encourages boaters to be or to designate a Sober Skipper before every boating trip. The Sober Skipper campaign is funded through a grant from the Sport Fish Restoration and Boating Trust Fund, administered by the U.S. Coast Guard.

In the United States, Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) thresholds differ from state to state regarding who is permitted to operate a boat. Likewise, the penalties for Boating Under the Influence (BUI) vary, even though BUI has consistently been the top contributing factor of fatal boating accidents. Yet not a single state has a law in place that prohibits boaters from possession and/or consumption of alcoholic beverages while their boat is being used for recreational purposes, as long as the operator stays below the state’s BAC threshold.

The Sea Tow Foundation is trying to change that, and for the first time in the history of the Sober Skipper Program, it is able to prove that the campaign is having a positive effect on the number of BUI deaths, injuries and accidents, according to the U.S. Coast Guard’s Boating Accident Statistics.

Among the 51 states and territories that have boating communities who have embraced the Sober Skipper Program, 94 percent have seen a reduction of BUI-related deaths, accidents or injuries, and a total of seven states saw a reduction in BUI across all three categories. Gail R. Kulp, the Sea Tow Foundation’s executive director, said this is definitive proof that the Foundation’s Sober Skipper Campaign is working and that the grassroots efforts used to promote the message have been successful.

“We have seen over 8.4 million people be reached by the Sober Skipper Program this year,” Kulp said. “This is an 800 percent increase and, based on the grant funding provided, this means that it cost less than one cent per person to make a difference and save lives.”

The media generated by the Sober Skipper Program this year was valued at over $215,000 which is more than double the amount of grant funding that the project was awarded. There was also an increase in the number of organizations, agencies and private citizens who requested a set of Sober Skipper wristbands to host a “Take the Pledge” event.

“These results are a big win, not only for the Sea Tow Foundation, but for the boating public at large,” Kulp added. “They illustrate that when the boating community comes together, great things can be achieved. We can’t wait to carry this momentum into the future and hopefully cut BUI deaths to zero.”

To Take the Pledge to be a Sober Skipper or request materials to host an event, visit www.soberskipper.com.

Tags:  2017-18  2019-20  BUI  Funding  Grants  News  Partner  Press Release  Sober Skipper  US Coast Guard  Website 

Share |
PermalinkComments (0)
 

Sea Tow Foundation Life Jacket Use Hits Records at NMMA Boat Shows

Posted By Gail Kulp, Friday, November 1, 2019
Updated: Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Sea Tow Foundation Life Jacket Use Hits Records at NMMA Boat Shows

Thanks to Life Jacket Loaner Stations set up by the Sea Tow Foundation, more than 34,000 attendees at the NMMA-hosted 2019 Tampa and Norwalk Boat Shows left with a better understanding of the importance of life jacket use.

Through partnerships with the National Marine Manufacturers Association and Onyx, the Sea Tow Foundation set up two Life Jacket Loaner Stations at each of the boat shows and loaned out more than 400 life jackets across the two events, which were held in late September and late October.

The stations are part of the Sea Tow Foundation’s Life Jacket Loaner Program – which features more than 575 locations nationwide where boaters can borrow life jackets for free and return them at the end of their boating trip.

The Life Jacket Loaner Stations at the Norwalk and Tampa Boat Shows helped to ensure that life jackets were made available for children and adults visiting the shows as they perused the docks and toured the various boats and other exhibits on display at the shows.

Each Life Jacket Loaner Station was staffed by volunteers from several local organizations, as well as local Sea Tow members and other community volunteers. By the time the shows concluded, more than 54 volunteers offered up their time to help spread awareness on the importance of life jackets.

“It’s so great to see so many different people using our life jackets at these shows,” said Gail R. Kulp, executive director of the Sea Tow Foundation. “With each person who borrows a life jacket or sees our life jacket loaner stations, we’re able to help spread a vital message on the importance of life jackets and always having them any time you are in or around the water. These shows are such a great opportunity to help further our cause to ensure boating is safe and fun for everyone involved.”

Kulp added that the Foundation’s presence at the shows was especially beneficial to children and their families, as it provided a valuable learning experience for boaters of all ages.

“Children are required by law to always wear life jackets, so getting them familiar with them at these shows is a great service to boaters,” Kulp said. “Having the opportunity to show these young children, in particular, that life jacket use can be simple, easy and, most of all, fun has a profound impact on the boating community as a whole. We’re so thankful to be able to team up with our friends at NMMA to help spread these important messages at their shows.”

To learn more about the Sea Tow Foundation and its programs, or to find a Life Jacket Loaner Station near you, visit www.boatingsafety.com.

Tags:  2019-20  Boating Safety  Life Jacket  Life Jacket Loaner Partnership  Life Jacket Loaner Station Grant  National Marine Manufacturers Association  News  Onyx Outdoor  Partner  Press Release  Vest Friends. Volunteers 

Share |
PermalinkComments (0)
 

A Visit to Sea Tow Southcentral Alaska

Posted By Gail Kulp, Friday, October 25, 2019
Updated: Tuesday, January 28, 2020

A Visit to Sea Tow Southcentral Alaska

In early October, Sea Tow Foundation Executive Director, Gail Kulp, had the opportunity to visit Alaska for the first time to attend a conference. While there, Gail stopped in to see Captain Trey Hill, owner of Sea Tow Southcentral Alaska. Trey owns three Sea Tow locations in Southcentral Alaska: Homer, Seward and Whittier.

Homer is the southernmost location for Capt. Trey. Located roughly 4 hours south of Anchorage, Homer is  home to many shops and restaurants as well as a bustling port for container ships, commercial fishing vessels and thousands of recreational boaters. Sea Tow’s Southcentral Alaskan office is located in town, with a boat docked in port providing boaters peace-of-mind 24/7/365. The Sea Tow Foundation’s life jacket loaner station is also available 24/7/365 for anyone who needs to borrow a life jacket to help ensure a safe day on the water.

Whittier is the easternmost location for Capt. Trey, a glacier-viewing paradise on Prince William Sound, about an hour southeast of Anchorage. Access to Whittier is controlled by the longest combined-use tunnel in North America. The tunnel is one lane and controlled on a tight schedule in 15 minute increments. This allows for vehicle traffic to flow in both directions as well as allow for a train to pass through the tunnel. There is always a full-time captain on Trey’s staff in Whittier to ensure prompt service for boaters; and eliminating any wait for tunnel traffic before Sea Tow help arrives.

Seward, one of the oldest communities in Alaska, is located on Resurrection Bay on the Kenai Peninsula about 2 ½ hours south of Anchorage. As a popular cruise port, Seward offers many activities to entertain cruise passengers including kayaking, fishing, whale watching cruises, shopping, or taking a ride on the Alaska Railroad (which begins in Seward). Seward is also very popular among recreational boaters. Gail was lucky enough to get a personal tour from Capt. Trey on a Sea Tow boat. They took in the amazing views of the surrounding snow-capped mountains and were lucky enough to see a few otters playing around in the crystal blue waters, which was a highlight for Makena, the dog, who wanted to join in on their fun.

Note from Gail: I fell in love with Alaska and, knowing that the state is 2 ½ times the size of Texas and that I’d only managed to see a small segment of it during my visit, I know that another trip will be in my future and I'm going to bring my family along! Who knows, maybe I’ll be one of the cruise ship passengers coming into port on my next trip! Why don't you plan a trip of your own?

 

 

 Attached Thumbnails:

Tags:  2019-20  Life Jacket  Life Jacket Loaner Partnership  Life Jacket Loaner Station Grant  Life Jacket Program  News  Onyx Outdoor  Partner  Press Release  US Coast Guard  Vest Friends  Website. 

Share |
PermalinkComments (0)
 

Sea Tow Foundation Announces $330,000 in Grants Awarded for 2019-20

Posted By Gail Kulp, Friday, August 2, 2019
Updated: Wednesday, February 26, 2020

Sea Tow Foundation Announces $330,000 in Grants Awarded for 2019-20

The Sea Tow Foundation – a nationwide nonprofit organization dedicated to spreading awareness of safe boating practices – has announced it will receive a series of grants from the United States Coast Guard for the 2019-20 grant year and beyond.

The grants – administered through the Coast Guard’s Sport Fish Restoration & Boating Trust Fund – will be used to support the Foundation’s Life Jacket Loaner Program and Sober Skipper Program.

“We couldn’t be more excited to continue to receive such resounding support from our friends at the Coast Guard,” said Gail R. Kulp, executive director of the Sea Tow Foundation. “These grants will go a long way toward saving lives on waterways all throughout the country, both this year and beyond.”

The Coast Guard has awarded the Foundation’s seminal Life Jacket Loaner Program with $210,000 for the coming year – an increase of nearly 8 percent year-over-year. In addition, the Sea Tow Foundation has been awarded the same amount for the following two years to guarantee that the Life Jacket Loaner Program will continue well into the future.

The grant money will be used toward increasing the number of Life Jacket Loaner Stations – of which there are currently more than 575 across the country. In addition, it will help fund replenishments and repairs of existing stations. Applications for next summer’s life jackets and loaner stations will begin on November 1, 2019 on the Sea Tow Foundation’s website. Kulp said more information will be shared this fall.

The Life Jacket Loaner Program grant will also help in the development and maintenance of an online database of life jacket loaner station locations around the country, along with a map of those locations,

A second grant of $120,000 has been awarded for the Sober Skipper program, which celebrated its sixth year in 2019. These funds will help the Foundation continue its goals of building greater awareness of the importance of sober boating through grassroots efforts to spread the message in boating communities around the country.

“Alcohol is the leading known contributor in fatal boating accidents, so our Sober Skipper program couldn’t be more important,” Kulp said. “Through these grants, we’ll be able to continue to increase the program’s reach through additional advertising and social media efforts.”

In the past year, the Sea Tow Foundation has established a brand-new American Sober Skipper Advisory Council, which works to unite the corporate and non-profit sectors of the boating industry around a shared message of safe boating. Grant funding will continue to support the Council, as well as fund a new component of the Council – a boating industry awards program to recognize and honor businesses who are promoting safe boating within their companies.

“It’s humbling to see so many influential members of the boating industry lock arms with one another through our Sober Skipper program,” Kulp added. “With the help of grants like these, we hope to do away with Boating Under the Influence for good.”

 

Tags:  2019-20  Grant  Life Jacket Loaner Program  Press Release  Sober Skipper Program  US Coast Guard 

Share |
PermalinkComments (0)