Living on a lake as grand as Sproat Lake has many perks, one of them being direct access to boating. Many Sproat Lake homes come with water access and a private dock, perfect for housing your boat during the summer months. Whether you’re headed out for a leisurely sail, fishing, tubbing, or wakeboarding, having a boat on the lake is one of the best ways to experience the beautiful and vast Sproat Lake. With that boat comes responsibility to yourself, those around you, wildlife, and the natural ecosystem. Here are some ways to stay safe while out on the lake this summer.
Boating on Sproat Lake
Transport Canada’s Safe Boating Guide starts off with the Stages of Responsible Boat Ownership, which include planning, registering and licensing, meeting all safety requirements, and disposing of your boat properly. During the planning stages it is important to gather all required documentation including insurance, obtain any necessary training, and gather safety equipment. Once you have your boat you will need to register it and obtain licensing which must stay up to date. Now is time for the fun part, actually using your boat. It’s important to keep your boat in good condition to maintain our natural environment, and of course, follow safe boating practices. If and when you are done with your boat, ensure you transfer over any licensing requirements to the new owner. If you’re not selling your boat, don’t just abandon it, recycle or dispose of it properly.
Pleasure Craft Operator Card
When you’re out on the water you are expected to follow safe boating practices, and maintain proof of competency, which can include a Pleasure Craft Operator Card, a boating safety course in Canada, a specified marine certificate, or a completed rental boat checklist. You can get your Pleasure Craft Operator Card by passing a boat safety course through Transport Canada, here’s a list of accredited course providers. Each boat has minimum safety requirements depending on length and vessel, but they all include a Personal Flotation Device for each person on board. It’s also important to have a sound-signalling device and waterproof flashlight incase of emergency rescue.
Sproat Lake has its own Marine Patrol that strives to promote a safe marine culture through consistent presence on the water, education, public assistance, coordination at the public boat launch, and community engagement. The Sproat Lake Marine Patrol zodiac patrols the lake enforcing safe boating practices, and is also used for water testing on all four arms. They utilise education at the public boat launch as well as social media to promote a safe boating environment. The Sproat Lake Marine Patrol is equipped with safety essentials including life vests, battery charger, first aid kits, and a fire extinguisher. You can find out more about the Sproat Lake Marine Patrol here: Instagram- @Sproatlakemarinepatrol Tiktok- @Sproatlakemarinepatrol Facebook- Sproat Lake Marine Patrol.
Now that you’ve done your due diligence, it’s time to hit the water and enjoy a beautiful summer. Stay safe out there, and as always, have fun!
Written by Megan Warrender, at The Valley Vibe. Port Alberni’s fast growing community and online magazine. The passion here at the Valley Vibe is to showcase the beautiful of our valley for all who live here, and travel through. Working together with many talented writers, we at the Valley Vibe love to explore, discover and uncover secret jewels about Port Alberni and Sproat Lake.