PULASKI COUNTY, Va. (WFXR) — If you are like many people, you might be planning to take advantage of the warm weather by heading to the lake or hitting the river over the course of the summer. Before you go, though, what do you need to know to stay safe while boating?

The owner of Mountain 2 Island, a water adventure company at Claytor Lake, Michael Valach, urges you to make sure everyone, including children, has a personal flotation device and more.

“Always have a throw cushion, a fire extinguisher, some kind of alert, whether it be a horn or whistle on the boat. Those are really important to have,” said Valach.

Since there are a lot of people on the water, he says boaters have to stay aware and vigilant to decrease the chances of any dangerous incidents.

For example, Valach recommends anticipating the unknown.

“A storm might pop up. Just be aware of your surroundings, whether there’s boats going… or whether it be a weather issue,” said Valach.

In addition, he says the number one rule is to keep a good enough distance between you and other boaters

“You should always stay at least 50 feet from any dock. I always tell people to stay 100 feet away,” Valach said. “It just makes it where you’re not close up on top of somebody and everybody’s got space and all.”

Valach also recommends staying hydrated while on the lake, so make sure to drink plenty of water.

The last tip from Valach is that no matter how much fun children are having on the boat, they should have a flotation device on at all times.