The USCG's Office of Auxiliary and Boating Safety
announced its 2009 Recreational Boating
Statistics report earlier this month. The report states a total of 4,730 accidents recorded by the CG in 2009 caused 736 deaths, over 3,300 injuries and about $36 million in property damage. The top 5 contributing factors to the accidents included boat operator inattention and inexperience, excessive speed, improper lookout and alcohol consumption
. DUI was the leading factor in 16% of deaths. In addition, a full 86% of boat operators involved in fatal accidents had not received boat safety
instruction. "Nearly 75% of the 736 people who died in boating accidents in 2009 drowned, and 84% of those victims reportedly were not wearing a life jacket," said Rear Adm. Kevin Cook, the CG's director of prevention policy. "The 2 most important things boaters can do to prevent the loss of life is to wear a life jacket and take a boater education course
You can read the full article here 2009 USCG Annual Accident Report | BoatTEST.com
Sail boats are once again very low in the ranking of vessels where a death was involved.