· Every Jet Ski that you own or rent should be operated with a life vest. You will be operating at dangerous speeds and this basic accessory is very important if you're thrown off or worse.
· Each Jet Ski will have an emergency cut off switch connected to a cable fastened to you. In the event you fall off, the cable releases the switch on the handlebars and shuts off the engine so it will stop moving and allow you to climb back on board. Remember: if the engine is running, the Jet Ski will be moving, even if you are not applying power.
· Changing direction on a Jet Ski relies on throttle. Once you are at speed and wish to turn, you must continue applying the gas. The propulsion AND steering are operated by the jet of water coming from the bottle of the hull. If there is not enough thrust from the nozzle, the vessel will not turn.
· Jet Skis do not have a brake. Use caution especially if you are around other boats or immovable objects, like a dock or pier. To properly stop, simply reduce speed to a slow idle then shut the motor off, but be careful because you will not have steering when you do.
· Take your time at first. This is most important. Learn how the watercraft operates and get a good feeling for turns and acceleration.
· Check the state laws regarding personal watercraft before renting one, since most states are different.
· Have fun!
We traveled to Key West as guests of Subaru, but all photos and opinions are completely our own.
[Photos: Steven D/Jaunted]