BOULDER CITY, Nev. – This Father’s Day, skip the necktie and give dad a life jacket.
Over the past five years, five men have lost their lives at Lake Mead and Lake Mohave on Father’s Day Weekend. In all five of the accidents, none of the men were wearing a life jacket.
“When we ask people why they don’t wear a life jacket, we hear the same answers over and over,” said Christie Vanover, park public affairs officer. “This Father’s Day, in an effort to break the pattern of visitor fatalities, we’re busting the myths.”
Some of the popular excuses for not wearing a life jacket include.
Life Jackets Are for Kids
It’s true. Kids should wear their life jackets, but so should adults.
In the past five years, the average age of drowning victims at Lake Mead National Recreation Area is 37 years old, and 95% have been men, and in all of these cases, the men weren’t wearing a life jacket.
I’m A Good Swimmer
Even the best swimmers can find themselves in danger.
After a day on the beach in the hot sun with a few drinks, your body slows down. If a weather pattern moves in, creating two-foot waves, making it back to shore becomes very difficult.
In either of these scenarios, a life jacket is an incredible backup for even the best swimmers.
Life Jackets Are Too Bulky
Life jackets come in a variety of styles, ranging from classic vests to lightweight, less bulky inflatable suspenders or belt packs.
The inflatable style provides more range of motion and is cooler to wear in warmer weather.
I’ll Just Use a Raft
Inflatable rafts and pool toys are not suitable alternatives to life jackets. I
t’s easy to fall off of a raft, and a light breeze can blow them away in an instant, leaving a swimmer without any flotation support.
Multiple people have drown after relying on a raft that got away from them.
“It would be a tragedy to lose another father, husband, brother or son this Father’s Day Weekend,” said Vanover. “We’re calling on the wives, sisters and moms out there to encourage their men to put on a life jacket while swimming in the lake.”
The classic vests sell for as little as $20, while the inflatables usually cost $50 to $100. They also come in an array of colors and patterns, including camouflage.
Free loaner life jackets are available at most of the popular beaches at Lake Mead and Lake Mohave.