All water-related recreational vehicles need to have life jackets aboard. When a boat is moving, Florida law requires children younger than 6 to wear a life jacket.
Life jackets designed for adults do not work for children. If the life jacket is too big, it will ride up around the face. If it's too small, it won't keep the person afloat.
FOLLOW THESE STEPS TO FIT YOUR CHILD'S LIFE JACKET:
- Check the manufacturer’s label to make sure the life jacket is designed for your child’s height and weight.
- Fasten the jacket. This may seem obvious, but just having your child sling it over his shoulder and not fasten it won't help in an emergency.
- Have your child hold his/her arms straight up.
- Grasp the top of the arm openings and pull up.
- Make sure there is no excess room above the openings.
- Try the jacket out in shallow waters.
For more water safety/boating safety information, contact:
Drowning Prevention Coalition of Palm Beach County
Safe Kids Palm Beach County
• U.S. Coast Guard