LIVERPOOL, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — Summer is quickly rolling in, a great time to enjoy the water safely! National Safe Boating Week kicked off on Saturday, May 20.

America’s Boating Club Syracuse of the United States Power Squadrons teamed up with the Onondaga Yacht Club on Saturday to celebrate the start of Safe Boating Week.

The event was held at the Onondaga Yacht Club and open to the public. People interested in boating could stop by to learn about boating safety and even take part in demonstrations.

“We have a unique opportunity here in Central New York with the canal system. Literally from Central New York you can go any place in the world,” said Jim Ryder, Commander, Syracuse Sail & Power Squadron.

That’s if you get there safely.

“There’s been a lot of accidents on lakes where children have been injured by propellers, people who don’t know the rules and regulations,” said Tess Freedman, Education Officer for Syracuse Sail and Power Squadron.

But you can learn by getting a boating safety certificate. New York State is requiring all motorized boaters to take a safe boating course and earn that certificate by 2025.

“It covers how to drive the boat, types of propulsion of the boat, it covers personal watercraft, docking, anchoring, tying knots,” said Freedman.

Keeping safety top of mind.

Before you fire up your boat, Freedman says check the forecast. If the weather is bad, do not go out on the water. Next comes, putting on your life jacket or personal flotation device.

“Your odds of surviving in an accident or falling man overboard without a life jacket go way down. Especially out here in Central New York right now, when the water temperatures are in the 50s,” said Ryder.

If you are stranded and need assistance, make sure you have handheld flares that have not expired.

Every boater is required to have handheld flares onboard, and are used when a boater or crew is in distress.

“You also have a whistle onboard so you can attract attention and you could even just use a mirror as a signal light it would help attract attention if you’re in distress,” said Freedman.

Keeping everyone onboard safe.

Click here to learn more about NYS Boating Education and earning a boating safety certificate.