That's because carbon monoxide is an odorless, colorless, tasteless toxic gas – posing a danger to boaters and swimmers.
CO is present in boat motor exhaust and can remain at toxic levels around the motor even after it is turned off.
In fact "Sophia's Law" in Minnesota places requirements for carbon monoxide labeling and detector placement on certain types of boats.
Al's Specialty Marine owner, Greg Bruggenthies, says, “The bigger boats, the Cuddys and some of them that have swim decks on the back, it can be an issue and it's again a law where you have to have carbon monoxide detector on some of those boats.”
The law is named for a 7-year-old whose death was caused by carbon monoxide on lake Minnetonka.
Bruggenthies offers some tips on how to stay safe on the water this weekend:
If you plan to get out on the water this weekend make sure your tires and wheel bearings on your boat trailer are in good shape first.
Your boat's horn and lights need to be in good working order.
A fire extinguisher and life jackets are also required to be kept on board.
It may be nearly summer now, but Bruggenthies emphasizes the importance of getting your boat winterized - so it's good to go next year.
“Cheap maintenance and it's a good piece of mind if you winterize properly, when spring comes you can make sure your battery is charged properly, maybe fire a motor up in the driveway but other than that you should be ready to go for spring,” he says.
He adds winterizing your boat will extend the life of your motor if done properly.
If you fail to winterize, it can cause motor damage and gear case issues -which can be costly.