The following are a few key things you need to know and keep in mind while riding a jet ski. These tips will help when getting comfortable driving them, controlling their speed and maneuvering them while on the water. Keeping these things in mind will ensure you have a safe outing and minimize the probability of incurring damage to the watercraft you are operating while out on the water.
Jet Ski’s do not have brakes
Its very important to keep this in mind while driving. Always make sure to keep a safe distance from other boats and jet ski’s. Never follow directly behind another water craft, riding side by side is safer. If you are following someone it is best to distance yourselves farther the faster you go. This ensures that if one of you stops you have enough distance between each other to react accordingly and either stop or move out of harms way.
Jet Ski’s will not turn with out throttle
Going back to the rule about them not having brakes, jet ski’s also cannot turn with out power. This means that in order to turn you must give the jet ski some throttle in order to maneuver and make turns.
Stay away from the shore
The lake levels in North Texas are really low at this time and water levels on and near the shore can be deceiving. Better to be safe than sorry. Staying out in the deeper parts of the lake will ensure you don’t hit sandbars or low water levels and rocks that could be on or near the shore.
Use the “Knee Deep” Rule
Always make sure the water is at least “knee deep” before starting the jet ski and letting it run. If water is level lower than “knee deep” there is the likelihood of sucking up rocks and other debris from the bottom of the lake into the jet pump of the ski. This can create problems and basically ruin a great day out on the water. Try and be aware as you can to how shallow the water is when you are nearing the shore for any reason.
Properly Beaching a Jet Ski or taking turns riding
When approaching the shore to beach the jet ski make sure you shut the engine off while the water is still deep. Do not let the jet ski suck up rocks, sand, mud, etc from the bottom of the lake. If you keep the jet ski running until you get to shore this will surely happen. When beaching the ski make sure you spot a good area that is either a clay/mud or sandy bottom with an appealing shore line. Avoid areas with large rocks, boulders, debris in the water and other things that would appear to damage the bottom of the jet ski if it came in contact with it. After shutting the ski off in knee deep water to prevent sucking rocks up, proceed to step off the jet ski and push/pull the jet ski towards the shore until you feel it make contact with the bottom of the lake. If you are briefly stopping to only let another person ride the ski or take turns then there is no need for the ski to come all the way to the shore. Have the person walk out to the ski and proceed to push the ski out until the water is at least “knee deep” before stepping on and starting it.
Always be aware of NO-WAKE zones
No-Wake zones are a very common site while on the lake. It is imperative that you are aware of them and abide by them. Going under the Lake Lewisville bridge is a common one. Next to Sneaky Pete’s restaurant and Bar there is one, Eagle Point Marina, the swimming area at Lewisville Lake Park, are a few locations where you will see them. When you are in a or near a no wake zone you are to only operate the jet ski at idle speed or slightly above idle only using the throttle to maneuver. If you are speeding in a No-Wake zone and a game warden or park ranger see’s there is a high probability you will be issued a citation for doing so. It is best to treat these areas like a parking lot and use minimal speed keeping a close eye on other boats and people swimming in the water.
Avoid High Risk areas
If you are renting a jet ski and it is your first time/beginner it is best for you to stay away from docks, gas docks, boat slips, marina’s and other high traffic boating areas. Since jet ski’s have no brakes and are primarily controlled with a throttle this creates a perfect combination of inherent danger and the possibility of hitting, crashing, colliding, etc with these things if you in or around them. At Jet Ski Rental Dallas fuel is inclusive with every rental to ensure that there is no need or desire for you to go to these places. Colliding with boat docks, gas docks and shore pick-up docks are the most common way that jet ski’s get damaged while being used. If someone is wanting you to pick them up or if you are taking turns it is better to use the Shore beaching technique vs attempting to pick them at a dock or marina.
Always wear your life vest
This is one of the most IMPORTANT things to remember. At anytime you are operating a personal watercraft a Coast Guard Approved life jacket is required. Not only does a life jacket keep you safe from drowning or from any other mishap where you might fall into the water, it is required by law. If you are seen operating a personal watercraft without one and are spotted by the Game Warden, Park Rangers, local police, etc. There is a high probability you will be issued a citation with a fine ranging from $195 all the way up to $500. Life Jackets save lives, if it is your first time out on the water or your 50th time, it is always good to practice safe boating habits out on the water and wear one.
Now with all that in mind you should now be equipped with some the important common general knowledge on how to operate a personal watercraft safely and properly. Please take some time to watch this video as well so you can get a feel for some live action of how it feels to be out on the water. Thanks & Enjoy!