A report on Queensland boating incidents has found a 30 per cent decrease in fatalities last year compared to 2009, Marine Infrastructure Minister Craig Wallace said.
Mr Wallace said the Maritime Safety Queensland annual Marine Incident Report, tabled in parliament today, found the loss of 14 lives in 2010 was a significant reduction compared to 20 deaths in 2009.
"The sad part is, only two out of 14 people who died on the water last year were wearing lifejackets.
"This is a tragic reminder that lifejackets are not only required equipment in commercial, fishing and recreational boats but are compulsory to wear in some situations.
"Even where it is not compulsory to wear a life jacket boaties should wear one as a common sense precaution, especially when boating alone or at night.
"We also found alcohol was involved in four of the fatal marine incidents.
Mr Wallace said boaties should remain vigilant and ensure they carried all required safety equipment including Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacons (EPIRBs), lifejackets and flares - and it ensure it's all up-to-date.
"Check the weather before heading out and tell the local VMR where you are going, as well as when and where you're due back," he said.
"Skippers should keep a proper lookout and remember that the same under .05 rule for drink driving applies on the water as on the road," he said.
Every time someone applies for a boat licence they are made aware they must provide lifejackets and other personal safety equipment for each passenger in their boat by law.
This safety obligation includes the broader requirement for the vessel to be safe, as imposed by the Marine Safety Act.
Each year MSQ carries out regular safety compliance activity with the Water Police, particularly in the lead up to holidays, which see large numbers of people on the water.
As part of MSQ's regional safety education programs, our officers also undertake boat ramp days and ongoing education which involve checking vessels and advising boaties what they're required to have - including the provision of safety equipment such as life jackets.