Whether you go afloat on a paddle board, an offshore yacht or anything in between, safety is paramount. Man cannot live in water for long, if at all. All equipment on your chosen craft needs to be regularly checked and maintained. If you are the owner/skipper, or simply a passenger, it is your responsibility to ensure you know what to do in an emergency, where the necessary equipment to keep you alive is and how to use it.
All aspects of safety afloat are extremely well covered by the RNLI, go to https://rnli.org/safety for a galaxy of advice covering every form of water sport and pick out the page you need. https://rnli.org/safety/what-we-can-do-for-you covers the advice services available to you, an RNLI safety adviser is on hand in most ports and will visit your boat to run through the safety requirements for your craft and yourself. Don’t hesitate to use this service, I used to do it myself and I know that the RNLI volunteers that will visit you are eager to help.
If you are new to boating, a course in sailing or power boat handling is essential. Within the Estuary the following companies run courses for sailing dinghies and power boats:- https://www.salcombedinghysailing.co.uk/
The RYA has approved shore and waterborne courses nationwide and on line:- https://www.rya.org.uk/courses-training/courses/navigation/Pages/shorebased-courses-guide.aspx
Salcombe Harbour Authority applies different speed limits within all of the Kingsbridge, Salcombe Estuary and enforces them. They also monitor the wash put up by all craft and there are areas where humans need to be aware of wildlife. Details of these and information about the Estuary in general can be found in the Salcombe Harbour Guide, published by the Harbour Authority, available in the Salcombe Harbour Office, Whitestrand or online at salcombeharbour.co.uk
Kingsbridge Estuary Boat Club organizes various training sessions with Devon School of Navigation, an RYA approved centre. Details of any courses will be published on the web site under Training.
Boating in all forms is a rewarding and pleasurable pastime. Doing it safely increases your pleasure.