Share the Water
Listen for motorboats, and paddle closer together in groups when you hear a motorboat approaching. Motorboats need deeper water to safely operate and pass. If motorized boats pass nearby, you are far less likely to capsize if you turn your bow into the wave and not take the wake broadside.
Waterways have "lanes of travel" similar to a highway system. Know the area you plan to paddle. If you are near commercial waterways, the navigation charts change often. NOAA has digital charts
available as a handy resource.
The depth of the channel may limit deep-draft vessels. Paddlers, however, are mobile and agile! Make use of your ability to move out of the way. If you are not crossing the channel, stay close to the shore. Large stationary objects offer a margin of protection.
At night, a white light must be shown toward oncoming traffic. Bright colors not only help keep track of fellow paddlers but make YOU easier to see if separated from your boat.
Watch this video for more tips about navigation rules of the road and paddling on multi-use waterways.