OUR MISSION: Make the Muskoka lakes safer and quieter to ensure the sustainable enjoyment of a treasured shared resource
Chair’s Message
Spring is here and we are all excited and looking forward to a new season by the lake. It’s also a time for reflection on everything that has happened in the year gone by. It has been a good year in moving forward on the objectives for Safe Quiet Lakes - we have accomplished a lot!

Much time had been spent preparing for, launching then analyzing our Lake Study. It was very affirming that over 6,000 people responded to the survey with their views. It reinforced our mandate and informed us to increase our focus on advocacy and legislative changes that can be enforced. It also confirmed that we need to be federally positioned to make these changes.

Transport Canada opened talks for changes to the boat muffler law this spring which is a great win for our decibel project. And our work with a government relations firm over the past few months has brought us to a new level of understanding on how to make changes to the issues we care about. This along with the large national coalition of like minded organizations that we have built will be the platform for future advocacy issues.

Another success was the growth of bright people on our board and volunteering on our committees. This year we again welcome new talent helping us promote our messages for safe and respectful boating. For all who give us your time and financial contributions - thank you!

Warm regards,

Diana Piquette
Chair, Safe Quiet Lakes
Safe Boating Awareness Week May 21st - 27th
Safe Boating Awareness Week has been an important communications activity at the start of every boating season and generally occurring near or over the May 24 weekend, the unofficial start of summer in Canada. Boaters are getting their vessels ready for a new season and in most places in Canada, both the boat and the boater have not been on the water for many months… since the previous fall.

To encourage boaters to better prepare for a new season, the CSBC (Canadian Safe Boating Council) focuses on 5 key messages, all designed to work together to “help you stay safe on the water”.

Now more than ever, the Canadian Safe Boating Council and its partners are encouraging all boating enthusiasts to learn about the importance of these messages:

  1. Wear Your Lifejacket - Over 80% of Canadians who drown while boating were not wearing their lifejacket or not wearing it properly. There are so many choices for lifejackets / personal floatation devices on the market now, it is easy to pick one that suits your ‘boating style’ and is one that you are comfortable wearing all the time you are on the water.
  2. Boat Sober - Whether it’s prescription drugs, alcohol or cannabis, the use of intoxicants is both irresponsible and illegal. In some provinces, being convicted of impaired boat operation will also affect your automobile license.
  3. Be Prepared, You and Your Vessel - Make sure you and your boat are up to your planned on-water activities. That means you are knowledgeable about your upcoming trip, your boat is properly equipped with both the required and good to have safety equipment, the weather is suitable for the voyage, you have sufficient fuel and you have filed a trip plan. Plus, this is not all about you…it is important to keep in mind that by staying out of trouble you will not be putting pressure on rescue resources.
  4. Take a Boating Course – If you are operating a powered recreational vessel, you must have your Pleasure Craft Operator Card or some other proof of competency. But that is just a start, so consider taking some advanced courses. If your boating preference tends towards paddle, this is the perfect time to enroll in some on-water training. Or if you are just starting out, check out startboating.ca and start your boating in a paddle craft responsibly. The site is not a substitute for on water training, but it does provide a great first step in education about paddle craft.
  5. Be Cold Water Safe – In case of an accident, cold water can severely impact your ability to swim or even just stay afloat. Even the best swimmers will feel the effects of a sudden cold-water immersion. No matter your swimming ability, the best chance of surviving an accidental cold-water immersion is to wear your lifejacket!
Wake Aware Committee Update
We have been working all winter in preparation for a busy boating season and we’re excited about our summer plans. 

The radar we place in conjunction with the Muskoka Lakes Association is all set up in the Foreman Narrows for another season to remind boaters that 9km is a lot slower then you think. 

We had great exposure for our bewakeaware.com video as it was featured at the Spring Cottage Life show. 

We have started a Marine Ambassador program to encourage marinas to help our educational efforts. All marinas are welcome to join us in helping to keep up the awareness of the peril of wakes and what boaters can do to help. We have marketing materials all ready to help spread the word!

We are developing new Wake Awareness materials for use this summer hopefully at in person events and beyond. 

No Wake signs have been re ordered and are available for $20.00. Contact us to get yours today.

We had two feature articles so far this year featuring all our Safe Quiet news. You can check the articles out here, Muskoka FM & Muskoka Region.

See you on the water this summer!
Decibel Coalition Update
The Decibel Coalition has been working for almost 2.5 years to make our lakes quieter by getting the regulations enhanced to include decibel limits for boat motor noise. Great strides have been made. The Coalition has over 55 lake and environmental association members and 9 municipal governments from BC to Quebec. Together the associations represent over 95,000 Canadians.

Transport Canada is responsible for regulations on Canadian waterways and in March they opened up a public consultation on their Let’s Talk web portal. They presented 5 options regarding boat muffler and noise emission levels. The Decibel Coalition supports option 5 which is to introduce performance standards, i.e. decibel limits, for both manufacturers and vessel operators to follow. These standards would make sure vessels don’t exceed certain decibel limits. The Coalition believes that the decibel limits must be accompanied by efficient, effective enforcement procedures that make it easy for police to use on the water.

The Transport Canada Let’s Talk consultation closed on May 13 and thanks to many of you there were almost 2000 responses with more than 98% in favour of decibel limits. This has sent a very loud and direct message to Transport Canada that action must be taken.

The Coalition has also been asking people to write to their politicians and again there has been great response from across the country. To date over 380 letters have been sent to over 70 MPs. Thank you to all those who have sent letters.

If you have not yet sent a letter to your MP(s) please click here. Input your name and postal code (do it twice if you have a seasonal and permanent home) and it will automatically find your MP(s) and bring up a draft letter. We encourage you to add your comments about what lake you are on and how excessively loud boats are affecting you. It will only take a minute or two but it will make a big difference. Numbers matter to politicians.

Tremendous progress has been made and the Coalition believes that we will be successful in getting the regulations changed. We thank all of our supporters because without you, we would be a hollow voice in Ottawa.
Safe Quiet Lakes is dedicated to making Muskoka's waterways safer and quieter.
We build partnerships to encourage conversations about respectful boating and to lead change through education and advocacy. We are a not-for-profit community group run by an active volunteer board and one Administrative Coordinator. Support is received from lakefront residents, municipalities, lake associations and marinas across Muskoka. At this time of year, we are actively planning for next summer, your generous contribution helps us to expand our reach and impact.
Your donation will help drive programs to address issues highlighted in our current survey results.   
Donations can be made online here or you can mail a cheque with the this form.
About Us
About Safe Quiet Lakes

Safe Quiet Lakes is a not-for-profit community group of boaters that promote safe, respectful boating.

We believe that positive, grass root conversations and education are important drivers of change. We created the Boater’s Code to help get the conversation started. 
Please click the image to watch a video about our programs.
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