Canoeing is a fundamentally dangerous activity. There are about 100 deaths in the United States a year related to canoeing/kayaking. The numbers in Canada are very roughly half that. I've only had one unexpected tip in a canoe, and it was enough to get me wearing a PFD for life. We shouldn't have to learn safety from experience!
This page is my attempt to motivate you to take safety seriously when canoeing. We have some data we can look at for accidents that have occured that give us a cautionary picture of what not to do. It's not hard to mitigate the risks, but it's not natural for us to take these risks seriously until something traumatic happens.
A discussion on how you can call for help when out on the water, how to recognize calls for help, and how to just generally keep tabs on your group if separated. I also have a separate page on how to get an emergency substitute for a whistle, in case you don't have one on you like you should!
Capsizing is going to happen eventually. You have to plan for it and be ready! Keep your socks in a dry sack, and know how to recover from a capsize.