Life jackets to borrow at Marine Park boat launch, Klineline Pond
Anne Johnston, Public Health
Vancouver, WA Boaters leaving from Marine Park can stay safe thanks to a new life jacket loaner stand at the Marine Park boat launch. People who need an extra life jacket can borrow one or more from the stand for free as they head out on the Columbia River and drop it off when they return. By law, children 12 and younger must wear a U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jacket or vest on all vessels 18 feet or smaller.
The stand will be popular with boaters and other water enthusiasts who forgot to pack their life jackets or realize their kids have outgrown their old jackets, said Anne Johnston, Safe Kids Clark County coordinator. But its more than just a convenience. Life jackets, if properly worn, save lives.
The stand was made available by Safe Kids Clark County in partnership with Vancouver Parks and Recreation. The life jackets were provided by the Sea Tow Foundation as part of a grant administered by the U.S. Coast Guard. Brian Haugen, an Eagle Scout with Cascade Pacific Council Troop 341, built a permanent kiosk for the station as his Eagle Scout Project.
Safe Kids Clark County also sponsors a stand at Klineline Pond, supplying a dozen life jackets in various sizes infant through adult available for free while swimmers cool off and play. Life jackets are stored in a shed next to the concession stand. Users are asked to return them to the shed before heading home, so they are available to others.
Safe Kids Clark County and Clark County Fire District 6 have teamed up to collect new and gently-used Coast Guard Certified Type II and III life jackets to help keep the loaner stands stocked. Life jackets can be dropped off at Station 61, 8800 N.E. Hazel Dell Ave.
Safe Kids Clark County reminds parents to:
Have a designated water watcher; never leave children unattended
Always wear a life jacket any time you and your child are in, on or near the water
Teach children to swim
Learn cardiopulmonary resuscitation for emergencies
Create barriers around pools, spas and other standing water