People may be closing their swimming pools now that it’s officially fall, but there’s still plenty of time for fishing. However, it’s important that all water activities are treated with respect and care. Here are five fishing safety practices that can prevent injuries or even death.
Top 5 Fishing Safety Practices
Keep Your Gear Organized
Anyone who has been fishing before knows that there’s a lot of equipment needed. Besides your fishing pole, you’ll also have plenty of tackle, including lures and hooks. The best fishing safety practice is to keep your tackle stowed safely away in a well-organized tackle box. Those hooks are designed to tear into flesh. Logically, that can be pretty dangerous for careless hands. Don’t simply leave the tackle piled up in a mess. It can result in injury. Instead, take the time to properly organize and set every piece in its correct place. You’ll be glad you did.
Watch Your Feet
This next tip goes hand-in-hand with the last one. While we’re discussing how to organize your equipment, be sure not to leave your gear lying around carelessly. If you suddenly hook a big fish, it can be very easy to forget your surroundings. Far too many fishers have tripped over a carelessly placed tackle box and tumbled into the water. According to the Red Cross
, about half of us cannot swim well enough to save ourselves from drowning. Before you begin fishing, be absolutely sure you won’t be in danger of tripping or slipping. Swimming lessons certainly won’t hurt either. Be careful with your gear.
Careful Casting Wins the Day
Speaking of casting, one of the top fishing safety practices is looking before you cast your line. Every fisher should be keenly aware of their surroundings. You don’t want to accidentally catch another person with your hook. Aside other people, a fisher should take note of potentially hazardous objects, like power lines. Electrocution can be fatal to a careless fisher. Remember: always look around before you cast. It could save your life or prevent injuries.
Watch Out for Hooks and Bites
Okay, so you’re out on your own and you’ve just snagged a big one. As you reel that fish in, don’t forget basic fishing safety practices. Once you get the catch close at hand, it will likely be flopping and wriggling around. No matter how many fish you’ve caught throughout your life, this is no time to let your guard down. After all, removing a hook from a live fish’s mouth can still be tricky.
As we mentioned earlier, that hook will be sharp! Take extra care not to prick your fingers with the razor sharp tip. As for the fish, getting that hook out will take some finesse and care. If the hook is deep inside the fish’s mouth, don’t just poke your fingers in there. That’s an easy way to get bitten. Remember, this creature is likely terrified. Instead, try using a hook remover. This can help you to carefully remove the hook. If the hook remains trapped inside the fish, it may be a lost cause. It will simply cause the creature to have an agonizing death. Consider cutting your line and releasing the poor fish back into the wild.
Wear a Coast Guard Approved Life Jacket
If you’re going to be out on or near the water, don’t forget basic safety tips. Beyond swimming lessons, it pays to wear a proper life jacket
. In this case, always make sure that the life jacket you’re wearing is approved by the U.S. Coast Guard
. This will ensure that the floatation device is as safe as possible.
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