Coast Guard urges owners to label their paddlecraft

Coast Guard urges owners to label their paddlecraft
Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

In the month of July, search and rescue crews responded to an average of one unmanned-adrift paddlecraft in the Puget Sound region every day. Now the Coast Guard is asking all owners of kayaks, canoes and other paddlecraft to label their vessel with essential contact information.

Every unmanned-adrift paddlecraft is treated as a potential distress situation. However, when the craft is properly labeled the situation can often be quickly resolved with a phone call to the vessel owner, which minimizes personnel fatigue and negative impacts on crew readiness.

Paddlecraft owners should label their vessel using a permanent or waterproof marker covered with clear waterproof tape for increased durability. The label should include the name of the owner, a number to reach them and a secondary point of contact.