Coast Guard Auxiliary teaches boating safety to Naval Sea Cadets

Posted:  Monday, December 4, 2017 - 10:45am
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After their morning participation in the South Portland Veterans Day Parade Nov. 11 and a quick lunch, 35 Naval Sea Cadets marched in formation from the mess deck at CG Sector Northern New England headquarters to a nearby classroom where members of CG Auxiliary Flotilla 25, Boothbay Harbor, stood ready to call class into session. Clad in green camo BDU’s (Battle Dress Uniforms), the Sea Cadets filed in and awaited the command to be seated; once seated things moved along quickly as the instructors covered an array of boating topics.

The course is broad-based and covers everything from various types of boats, means of propulsion and hull forms to fueling safety and basic seamanship. Docking with/against wind and current are explained along with demonstrations of the different types of life jackets, including inflatable ones. One area that was covered and discussed in detail, and is a mystery to many recreational boaters, was Rules of the Road, the required actions between meeting, crossing or overtaking boats: two power boats; a power and a sailboat; or two sailboats.

The class began Saturday afternoon then reconvened Sunday morning. The final exam was 50 questions and while some of the postures adopted for actually taking the exam were a bit non-standard, all of the cadets passed and will receive the certification of completion card at their next monthly meeting.

Maine is one of only 13 states that does not require some form of nationally recognized boater education for recreational boaters; the course offered, “About Boating Safely,” is one of several courses that fulfill that 37-state requirement and provides those who pass the course with a good-for-life certification of completion. Many insurers of recreational boats also offer discounts to those who’ve completed an approved boating course.

The United States Naval Sea Cadet Corps (USNSCC) is sponsored by the Navy League of the United States and supported by the U.S. Navy and U.S. Coast Guard. Cadets range in age from 10-17 and meet monthly at American Legion Post #35 in South Portland. For information about the Naval Sea Cadets, visit: www.seacadets.org

For information about the US Coast Guard Auxiliary Flotilla 25, visit www.flotilla25.org The website contains general information regarding membership and CG Auxiliary programs as well as schedules for local Boating Safety classes and free Vessel Safety Check information and event locations.