10 Boating Terms and Safety Tips You Need to Know

Boating Gippsland

If you are considering taking a boat out on the water for your latest holiday adventure, there are some basic things that you had better know. Don't count on the lessons you learned in primary school, if you learned any lessons at all. Knowing basic boating terms and safety tips is an important part of your preparation.


1. Bow

The bow, pronounced like the motion you make when you bend forward at the waist, is the front end of the boat. Resist the urge to ride on the bow, it can be incredibly dangerous. Only ride in the installed seats.


2. Stern

The stern is the rear end of the boat. Depending on your craft, this is where you will find seating areas and the engine. Respect the engine and all of its components! Do not touch a running engine and, if you are sat near the engine, keep loose clothing tucked in.


3. Aft

When someone asks you to go aft, they are asking that you move toward the stern of the boat. No matter what anyone asks of you, do not walk along the boat unless you feel safe doing so.


4. Forward

It makes sense: Moving forward is moving toward the bow of the boat. Resist the urge to move forward in any way that will distract the driver of the boat. This can be dangerous to everyone on board. The driver of the vessel should be treated no differently than the driver of a vehicle on the motorway.


5. Port

If you are standing on the boat looking forward, the port side is the left hand side of the boat. If you are asked to help guide the boat, knowing your left from your right is important.


6. Starboard

Standing in a face forward position, the starboard side is the right hand side of the boat.


7. Port Bow

This term refers to the left front of any boat.


8. Port Quarter

The port quarter of the boat is the rear left side (when you are facing forward).


9. Starboard Bow

Now that you are following along, you can guess what the starboard bow is. That's correct! It's the front right of the vessel.


10. Starboard Quarter

You've got this one. The starboard quarter is the rear right of any boat.


You are only going on holiday; you aren't attempting to become an expert yachtsman. Why do you need to know these terms? Because along with staying sober while operating a boat, knowing these most basic terms is a matter of safety.


You do not need to memorise a boating dictionary, but you do need to know the words and definitions above. As you become entwined in the boating world, no matter for how short a time, you want to appear to know what you are doing.


You won't be spending the full part of your evening on the boat. Nor will your holiday be taken on the ocean. When planning for your accommodations, visit www.CaptainsCove.com.au. The site offers the best accommodations on the coast!

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