Canoeists and kayakers are boaters too, and they need to follow safe boating practices. A significant portion of fatal capsizes result from occupant movement. A study of paddle sport accident statistics from 1995 to 2000 identifies problem areas that offer the greatest opportunities to reduce canoe and kayak fatalities:
- 75% of all fatalities examined were associated with canoeing rather than kayaking.
- 83% of all canoeing-related fatality victims were not wearing a PFD at the time of the accident.
- Weight shift played a major role in roughly 50% of all canoeing accidents.
- Approximately 50% of victims in fatal canoe and kayak accidents were fishing at the time of the accident.
- At least 25% of victims in fatal canoeing accidents are believed to have consumed alcohol immediately before the accident.
Source: Critical Judgement: Understanding and Preventing Canoe and Kayak Fatalities,
American Canoe Association 2003