The OPP say that a ten-year study into boating and off-road incidents has revealed that the most common cause of deaths in boating can be linked to a lack of safety equipment and capsized boats while alcohol leads the way for off-road vehicle deaths.
OPP report that over the last 10 years 276 people have died in 245 boating incidents while 167 people died in 165 off-road incidents in OPP jurisdictions.
OPP say the most concerning data was an overwhelmingly high rate of safety equipment being under-utilized with a total of 226 of the 276 deceased not wearing a lifejacket or PFD at the time of their deaths.
The report also found that out of 165 off-road fatalities, 77 of them were alcohol or drug-related with not wearing a helmet trailing just behind at a rate of 74 of the deaths.
OPP Deputy Commissioner Brad Blair spoke to the report saying,
“Our data could not make it any clearer that the risks to all and the consequences for some do not change from year-to-year when mixing boating and off-roading with alcohol or drugs, driving carelessly, and not being equipped or prepared to survive an unexpected life-threatening turn of events on the water and on the trails,” said Blair.