Boat fatality rate continues decline
Coast Guard statistics for 2010 available
The U.S. Coast Guard has released its annual publication, Recreational Boating Statistics 2010. In 2010 the Coast Guard counted 4604 accidents and 672 deaths, which translates to a fatality rate of 5.4 deaths per 100,000 registered recreational vessels. This represents a 6.9% decrease from the fatality rate in 2009, and the number of accidents also decreased by 8.7%, while the number of injuries was down 6.1%.
The total number of registered recreational vessels in 2010 was 12,438,926, which is a 2.2% decrease from 2009.
Almost 75% of all fatalities drowned, and of those 80% were using vessels less than 21 feet long. Alcohol use was listed as the leading contributing factor in 19% of the deaths.
The most common types of vessels involved in reported accidents were open motorboats (46%), personal watercraft (20%), and cabin motorboats (14%).