Best First Aid Kits For Boat Safety

Best First Aid Kits For Boat Safety | Life of Sailing

Last Updated by

Daniel Wade

April 18, 2023

Key Takeaways

  • Choose a first-aid kit for your boat that suits your specific needs and budget
  • Basic first-aid kit requirements are listed by the U.S. Coast Guard under Title 46
  • For longer trips or large groups on board consider a more comprehensive kit
  • Emergencies can happen so understand the importance a first-aid kit on your boat

Boating is a fun water activity but unexpected accidents can occur at any time. So what is the best first-aid kit for boating to be prepared for anything?

The best boating first-aid kit to have is going to vary based on cost and the type of items included. A high quality marine emergency kit typically consists of bandages, waterproof sections, injury guides, and warming blankets to offer a crucial line of defense in the event of a boat crisis.

The guidelines set by the U.S. Coast Guard in Title 46 subpart 160.041 require a corrosion-resistant container, labeled compartments, and instructions for a boating first-aid kit . Seasoned boaters stress the significance of having one but specific endeavors may require supplementary items.


Table of contents

Top Nine Best Boating First-Aid Kits

First-aid kits vary in supplies and costs making it somewhat difficult to narrow down your results. The following first-aid kits vary in use and price depending on what water activity you plan on doing.

North American Rescue

North American Rescue

North American Rescue has created a Trauma and First-Aid Boating Kit that meets and exceeds the U.S. Coast Guards requirements. This kit include everything that Title 46 requires but it also includes items such as:

  • Hypothermia wrap
  • CPR mask
  • Hemostat to help control excessive bleeding

This kit is to equip you with essential items for both minor and major injuries including life threatening situations. It offers a comprehensive set of tools for a wide range of emergencies and saves you the trouble of carrying an entire hospital with you.


  • Best for minor or moderate injuries
  • Unique items to help with various situations like excessive bleeding and hypothermia


  • $544.29 is not the cheapest option among first-aid kits
  • Might be overkill for those that go boating on weekends

Northern Safety First-Aid Marine Kit

Northern Safety First-Aid Marine Kit
Northern Safety First-Aid Marine Kit

If you are just getting started in the boating world and tend not to venture out for too long or too far then the Northern Safety First Aid Only USCG Approved Life Boat Marine first-aid kit might be the best option for you. It has all of the basic necessities and requirements of Title 46 and a few additional burn treatment options for being out too long in the sun.

Consider this first-aid kit if your boat is used for shorter trips with only a few passengers. It is simple yet effective and includes basic medical supplies. It is also affordable and a great mini first-aid kit with a price of $126.38 before taxes.


  • Great for day sailing or short trips
  • Affordable at around $127


  • Could be too small for larger boats
  • Only has basic medical supplies

CPR Savers Marine First-Aid Kit

CPR Savers Marine First-Aid Kit
CPR Savers Marine First-Aid Kit

CPR Savers has the Marine 1000 first-aid kit that consists of just about everything you could think of for a comprehensive first-aid kit that could possibly handle a life threatening injury on a boat. It meets the basic requirements of Title 46 and it includes items such as:

  • Six different sizes of an oral airway instrument
  • Rehydration salts
  • After-sting wipes
  • Scalpel
  • Syringe

Their goal with creating this first-aid kit was to be able to accommodate multiple people who sustained life threatening injuries for up to 12 hours while waiting for professional help to arrive. This first-aid kit comes with padded foam and rubber non-slip at the bottom but it lacks waterproof protection. Despite this and considering the price of $339.99 before tax for all the equipment included it is still a great value.


  • Complete package when it comes to everything included in a first-aid kit
  • Could help sustain life threatening injuries up to 12 hours


  • A little more expensive at $340
  • Would likely be overkill on a smaller boat or weekend use only

Survival Supply Marine Kit

Survival Supply Marine Kit
Survival Supply Marine Kit

The Survival Supply All-in-One 72 Hour Marine Preparedness Kit- 1 Person has it all. This boating first-aid kit not only satisfies U.S. Coast Guard requirements but also provides a comprehensive range of additional items including:

  • Fire extinguisher
  • Waterproof flashlight
  • Emergency whistles
  • Safety air horn

The universal design ensures that you have everything you need for a secure boating experience. This is an affordable kit at $189.99 before taxes and is ideal for beginners or those needing to meet Coast Guard recommendations.

One should hope to never use these items and beginners in the boating world may not know all the necessary items required for safety and regulations. Regardless if you have a short or long trip emergencies can happen unexpectedly.


  • Covers more than just a basic kit, so you could likely use on larger boats
  • Great for beginner boaters that need a quality first-aid kit


  • Slightly expensive at $190 for a small boat
  • Might not use a handful of items if on a small boat

Orion Life Boat First-Aid Kit Best Bang for Your Buck

Orion Life Boat First-Aid Kit Best Bang for Your Buck
Orion Life Boat First-Aid Kit Best Bang for Your Buck

The Orion Life Boat first-aid kit outperforms a handful of other first-aid kit brands due to durability and survival in extreme conditions. It has been tested by exposure to salt water for 24 hours and adapted to resist cracking in freezing temperatures while also being impact-resistant.

For adventurous boaters seeking a reliable waterproof first-aid kit this is the ideal choice. The medical supplies may require updates over time but the durable case can endure as long as you do and ensure your safety in any situation.

The USCG approved badge on the exterior of the Orion Life Boat first-aid kit assures you that you have everything you need for your safety in any boating expedition. It has a durable construction making this kit is a wise investment for roughly $150.


  • Best bang for your buck first-aid kit
  • Waterproof, up to 24 hours in salt water


  • Might not be enough for larger boats

Boat Medic Marine Kit

Boat Medic Marine Kit
Boat Medic Marine Kit

The Boat Medic kit is a standout option among the many first-aid kits on the market due to its durability, waterproof feature, and easy-to-use labeling system for identifying crucial items during a medical crisis. Its compact design makes it a great option for space saving on a boat. This is arguably one of the best marine kits you can find.


  • Has a small and large kit option so that you can use on small or large boats
  • Has more than 65 items inside and you can add your own


  • A little pricey at $250 for the small and $350 for the large
  • Might be overwhelming to have a lot of items within a kit

Adventure Medical Kit

Adventure Medical Kit
Adventure Medical Kit

The Adventure Medical Kit is ideal for prolonged sea journeys. It features vital wound care supplies like bandages and dressings along with burn and blister treatments, splints, and wraps for fractures and sprains.

The waterproof and floatable case safeguards your medical supplies from harsh weather conditions and keeps them dry and secure. It also has easy to read cards to know how to use the items in the kit in time of distress.


  • Has 150 items to cover a variety of situations
  • Waterproof, floats, and in a dry case
  • Great for long trips and a moderate amount of people


  • Pricey at around $320
  • Not ideal for smaller boats or just a few people
  • Can be intimidating going through 150 items inside kit

Coleman Waterproof First-Aid Kit

Coleman Waterproof First-Aid Kit
Coleman Waterproof First-Aid Kit

If you need a first-aid kit in a pinch then you cannot go wrong with the Coleman Waterproof kit. The crush-resistant floating case holds 100 waterproof first-aid items and is perfect for water sports and minor injuries. The kit is compiled with bandages, gauze pads, and antiseptic wipes.


  • Has 100 items to handle many situations
  • Waterproof, floats, in a dry case
  • Cost effective at under $20


  • Only ideal for small boats or limited use vessels
  • Not going to help in major situations
  • Considered “bare bones” for supplies covering moderate injuries

Surviveware Waterproof First Aid Kit

Surviveware Waterproof First Aid Kit
Surviveware Waterproof First Aid Kit

Surviveware has a handful of quality first-aid kits depending on your needs. For their waterproof first-aid kit it comes with your basic materials and a few essential items that are perfectly labeled and organized.


  • Waterproof in both a small and large size first-aid kit
  • Compact and light while also cost effective at under $60 for small


  • Only ideal for small boats
  • Not ideal for moderate or major situations

Why You Need a First-Aid Kit on Your Boat

It is not required by the U.S. Coast Guard to have a marine first-aid kit but is a practical measure for boaters since accidents can be more difficult to manage due to limited medical assistance. Being prepared with a well stocked kit is always better than taking risks during activities like fishing where immediate medical attention may not be easily accessible. Think of the first-aid kit as an insurance policy that you hope you will never need.

First Line of Defense

During an emergency situation a first-aid kit buys you time for proper care or possibly fixes the problem. Being hours away from medical aid can be hazardous and it makes it impractical to settle for a minimal first-aid kit for cost and space reasons.

Having All of Your Supplies at Hand

When facing an emergency with limited medical aid access you cannot rely on a few band-aids during water outings with multiple individuals for a prolonged period. To avoid unexpected situations you should prepare accordingly based on your activities on the water or area and having sting wipes and ammonia inhalants to help can prevent overheating..

Specific to Your Needs

A basic medical kit for a boat is designed to address basic health needs during a voyage and may contain critical items depending on the selected kit. The contents of a first-aid kit are customized based on personal requirements that include essential medications and emergency supplies like epinephrine injectors for severe allergies or issues related to your needs.

The Different Types of Marine First-Aid Kits

Choosing an appropriate marine first-aid kit depends on the vessel's size and specific requirements for meeting coast guard regulations in addressing emergencies. Larger vessels need more supplies. To preserve the first-aid kit's effectiveness it should be stored in a cool place because high temperatures can weaken adhesives and medications during lifeboat survival.

Type A Marine First-Aid Kits

Type A first-aid kits are intended for vessels with a small population and low risk like a private yacht or smaller sailboat. These first-aid kits typically contain items to manage minor injuries.


  • Planning for them is a breeze and they can be tailored to different situations with ease. Additionally their cost-effectiveness is due to their simple focus on contents and possible situations.


  • These are useful first-aid kits but they do not cover enough ground for serious situations.

Type B Marine First-Aid Kits

Type B marine first-aid kits pertain to vessels that accommodate large numbers of people and are associated with heightened hazards such as cruise ships and liners. This classification necessitates the management of more serious medical conditions and wounds and lacerations.


  • Capable of managing graver injuries and medical conditions while offering an improved peace of mind.


  • Planning for it can pose a challenge due to the need for careful consideration of various factors and the allocation of adequate resources.

It is worth emphasizing that these marine first-aid kit type considerations are relevant only to commercial vessels and not necessarily applicable to non-professionals. For boaters that want a simpler approach you can look at:

  • Important factors to consider in case of injury or illness that alter the gravity of the condition
  • Availability of medical supplies and equipment
  • The proximity of medical assistance

What Belongs in a First-Aid Kit?

There is an extensive selection of first-aid kits available in the market that each strive to offer distinct features. Most first-aid kits comprise classic options that are commonly included for a good reason.


The initial group of items required for wounds, cuts, and scrapes includes first aid bandages, band aids, and patches for injury coverage. It is equally important to include antiseptic and cleaning solutions to prevent infections.

Survival Items

First-aid kits are to provide immediate and temporary medical aid until professional medical care is obtainable so it is crucial to include items that facilitate safe transportation to a medical facility. Survival items are also useful to have in your kit such as:

  • Scissors and tweezers
  • Items that are made of durable materials like metal or stainless steel
  • Blankets
  • Flashlights
  • Compass
  • Whistle


Certain first-aid kits may contain written instructions and information that can be extremely valuable in situations where your first aid expertise is uncertain. These can act as a helpful aid to jog your memory if you have already acquired some basic knowledge.

Waterproof First-Aid Kit

Having a suitable container for your first-aid kit is important to keep your supplies safe and in good condition. It is recommended to use a waterproof container but a water-resistant option may also work. Choosing a durable container will help protect your first aid supplies from damage and ensure they remain usable when needed.

How to Pick the Right First-Aid Kit for You

Discovering suitable preparations can be challenging given the surplus of alternatives. Although an all-inclusive kit exists for the financially capable it may not be obligatory for everyone. It should be emphasized that there is no universal first-aid kit or superior producer since each kit has its own expertise and functions optimally when personalized for specific circumstances or events.

Weekend Warrior

If you typically use your boat for short recreational trips with friends or for brief fishing excursions then you are unlikely to venture too far from immediate emergency assistance. The proximity to shore generally determines the level of need even though emergencies can happen anywhere. If you fall into this category then having the essentials on board should suffice without requiring additional features.

Long Travel Excursions

It is wise to be more prepared if you plan to go on a long fishing trip with friends and aim to lose sight of land. Consider having a comprehensive first-aid kit like the Marine 1000 first-aid kit which can cover various needs. Such kits are not only for extreme situations like shark attacks but also for common issues like dehydration or sunburns that could cause harm.


Boaters should prioritize evaluating the contents of a first-aid kit over the cost even though budget is important. It is wise to choose a reasonably priced kit with adequate supplies for minor issues or emergencies that align with your boating needs. After selecting a suitable kit you should compare different brands and prices.

Should You Make Your Own First-Aid Kit?

Deciding whether to make your own offshore first-aid kit or buy a pre-made one is a personal choice based on individual needs. Building your kit may save money but can be time-consuming if searching for specialized items. The goal is to have a well-equipped and easily accessible kit for any medical emergencies.

Best First Aid Kits For Boat Safety
Daniel Wade

Daniel Wade

I've personally had thousands of questions about sailing and sailboats over the years. As I learn and experience sailing, and the community, I share the answers that work and make sense to me, here on Life of Sailing.

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