EAGLE RIVER, Alaska – Flotilla 2-14, U. S. Coast Guard Auxiliary is teaming up with the University of Alaska Anchorage to present “Paddlesports America,” a safety seminar for novice canoers, kayakers and other paddlesports enthusiasts, Saturday, May 16. The course begins with a three-hour classroom session by the Auxiliary from 9 a.m. to noon at the UAA Chugiak-Eagle River campus, 10928 Eagle River Rd. University instructors will then present an on-the-water safety review at the Wells Fargo pool from 1 to 3 p.m.
To register and pay the $49 fee in advance, go to www.uaa.alaska.edu/continuinged, or call UAA at (907) 786-6790. The course number is CNCE A016.
Topics include basics such as understanding paddlecraft characteristics and vessel capacities, selecting the proper paddle and how to file a float plan. Paddlers will learn the proper way to transport the paddlecraft; conduct a pre-departure check; dress for a safe trip; load gear and their responsibilities when paddling with others. Paddlers will learn how to enter and exit a canoe or kayak, be briefed on local hazards, learn to secure the paddlecraft and share the waterways with others.
Boating emergencies such as hypothermia, drowning, capsizing, swamping and falls overboard also will be covered. Legal issues such as life jacket and vessel registration requirements, unlawful operation, Homeland Security restrictions, alcohol and drugs, navigation lights, sound-producing devices, visual distress signals, environmental protection and what to do if in a boating accident, will be explained.
Questions can be directed to Mel Kalkowski, the flotilla’s public education officer, at firstname.lastname@example.org.