The Dangers of Propeller Strikes.

A nice day on the water can turn harmful and even deadly.

Recently, the number of people who have been struck by propellers has increased. As some have accidentally fell in the water, the propeller blades on the boat which is going back to pick up the individual can strike them.

In fact between 185 and 265 accidents occur each year because of propeller strikes; 28 to 47 turn out to be fatal. Just last summer a 10 year old boy was fatally injured at Atlantic Beach in Long Island was struck in the leg while he was swimming.

Talk to your guests when they first board the boat; making them aware of the dangers associated with propellers.

Here are some tips to keep you and your guest safe:

  1. Make sure your engine is COMPLETELY shut off if someone’s at the stern of the boat, and if someone is entering or exiting the boat.
  2. Wear your lanyard (engine cut off switch) at all times.
  3. Stay At Least 100 feet away from diver flags and use extreme caution as the diver may not be visible to you.
  4. Do not put your boat into reverse; always make sure you appoint someone to look at the back of the boat and if it is necessary for you to go back, go around instead.
  5. Make sure all children are supervised at all times and areas used as platforms for swimming should be looked after.
  6. Educate all your guests about safety on the water; make sure they are wearing life jackets at all times and let them know of possible dangers with propellers.
  7. Make sure someone at all times has their eyes on the stern and sides of the boat.

Safety Devices that can be used to decrease the possibility of Propeller strikes:

  1. Sensors
  2. Rings for your propellers
  3. Another safety device is the Prop Stopper which connects into the ignition system, preventing the motor from turning on when the boarding ladder is deployed.


Taking precautions can allow for a beautiful day on the water to play out as it is supposed to,

Safe boating to all and be aware of the propellers.


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