Whether it's sailing, kayaking or power boating, there are rules on the water, just like on the road. Making sure to follow them will help keep everyone stay afloat.
To start, you have to think of the Mississippi just like a highway. Auxiliary coast guard commander Robin Priestley has a little saying to help you out.
Red right returning from sea
That means if you're going upstream stick to the right and make sure to follow course with the red buoys.
But the commander says that doesn't always solve every problem...that's where the right of way comes in.
"The thing to remember is who is the stand on and who is the give way vessel, when it comes to sail verses power, power is the give way vessel. When it comes to sail verses canoe or kayak, the sail is the give way vessel," says Robin Priestley, Auxiliary Coast Guard.
When it comes to jet skis...they're supposed to steer clear of everyone and not jump wakes.
"They also have to be cognoscente that they lose all steering when they ease off the throttle."
Lastly, there are some international signs that Priestley says many boaters don't know.
One short blast means you're passing the boater on their left or port, two means on the right, or starboard. And five means help.
He says knowing these rules will really help boaters keep from crashing.
Priestley says the local flotilla groups give weekly courses in boating etiquette and safety.