One-third of all U.S. boating fatalities involve hunters and fishermen. Bucking the trend begins with boat and motor maintenance, and upkeep of survival and navigational equipment, including radios, GPS, charts, PFDs, flares, flashlights, rain gear, whistles, distress flags, and water and food stores. ( 1 ) Prepare for contingencies by filing a float plan, then stick to it. ( 2 ) Tune your radio to the National Weather Service (get details at www.nws.noaa.gov/nwr) to listen for small-craft warnings, and heed them.** ( 3 ) If you capsize or fall overboard, stick with the boat. Swimming exposes more surfaces of the bodyy to cold water, hastening the onset of hypothermia. It's also much easier for rescuers to spot a boat than a head bobbing in choppy water. If you can't reboard the boat or crawl on top of the floating hull, assume the Heat Escape Lessening Position (HELP) with knees drawn to chest, ankles crossed, and forearms crossed over chest to insulate the body's core. **( 4 ) Wear a life jacket. As a group, sportsmen are the most reluctant to wear them. Coast Guard Cmdr. Kim Pickens of Portsmouth, Virginia, recommends the new user-friendly life jackets, including inflatable suspenders and belts that layer comfortably over clothing, and more traditional Type III jackets that permit free movement of the upper torso and arms for fishing or shouldering a shotgun.