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May 2013

Storm prep

Be ready for hurricane season

Storm prep

Follow these recommendations when securing your boat for a hurricane:

  • If your boat can be trailered, remove it from the water. Take it home or to an area that is elevated above the anticipated storm surge. Consider storing the boat in a garage.
  • If you do store your boat on land, choose a location clear of trees, overhead wires, and other potential dangers. Don’t store the boat on ground that is prone to becoming saturated, because it could topple the boat.
  • If possible, strap the boat down to the ground.
  • Whether it’s in the water or on land, reduce your vessel’s surface area. Remove all covers, dodgers, canvas, Biminis and gear stored on deck, including dinghies, small outboard motors, spare sails, and fuel containers. Remove all sails from the rigging.
  • Consider removing expensive electronics and storing them at home.
  • Close all through-hull valves (except auto bilge drains or other deck drains).
  • Ensure that all the batteries are fully charged. Turn off all electronics except for automatic bilge pumps.
  • Close and secure all ports, windows and hatches. Secure vents and dorades to engine spaces.
  • Add extra dock lines. Use as many cleats as possible to distribute the forces on these lines to a larger area. Secure some heavy lines to pilings, but allow for tide and storm surge.
  • Keep lines from the boat to floating piers as tight as possible. Tighten again after the lines are wet. The shock load of lines pulling on cleats is what usually causes their failure.
  • Add chafing gear on dock and mooring lines where needed, especially if the lines go through chocks. The heavy strain placed on these lines significantly increases the amount of wear on them.
  • Put out all your fenders, even if your boat is in a slip with no other boats beside you.
  • Check your insurance policy, and keep it in a safe place.

 

  

 

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