You know how every car feels different when you get behind the wheel to drive? It is the same with yacht. Each vessel handles differently. The more knowledge you have with boating in different conditions, of course, the more quickly you will adapt to taking any boat out on the water safely.
Here are five tips to help improve your yacht handling skills:
- Practice. Spend some time on the open water where you have adequate room to try different maneuvers with your yacht. Get a feel for how the vessel handles in forward or reverse, when you execute turns either port or starboard and when you stop. This helps you anticipate whether it is safe to move a certain way and how much time to give yourself to safely stop. It is also very wise to practice practical skills such as approaching an object (simulating a person overboard) and bringing it onboard safely, as well as drawing up alongside a buoy or dock. If you are just becoming familiar with your yacht, consider hiring a captain or taking classes to teach you the finer points in operating your vessel. Not only will your additional skills help to protect you, your vessel, passengers and other boaters but it may also lower your yacht insurance premiums.
- Test yourself. Run through practice drills for these situations and try doing them when the conditions are different – with higher winds and stronger currents or during pouring rain, in both good and poor visibility conditions. Ideally you should have the skill and confidence to cope with these scenarios in any situation as it arises.
- Be Properly Equipped. Yachting is fun but things can quickly go wrong with inexperience. Check to ensure that your equipment is running properly, that you have enough life jackets for all passengers on board and adequate first aid supplies. Taking a yacht out on the water is not just a recreational activity it is a serious undertaking when you consider the liability. In addition to safe boating practices, obtaining proper yacht insurance from a specialized yacht insurance company like Global Marine Insurance can protect your investment and limit liability.
- Slow Down. You should be able to maintain expert control of your vessel at slow speeds as well as at cruise. Often dangerous situations call for slower careful navigation. For example the tight spaces in a marina and limited visibility at night may call for reduced speeds.
- Secure Your Vessel. Boaters should work on securing their yachts to docks or floating docks, keeping in mind the impact wind, currents and changing tide levels can have on a yacht.
You have made a considerable investment in your yacht, having the skills to properly operate it will help protect your investment and safety. Of course, even the most skilled and cautious captains can be involved in a yachting accident or have damage incurred to their vessel. Having enough yacht insurance coverage to protect your investment and your lifestyle will allow you to head to open water confident and carefree. Call Global Marine Insurance specialists at 800-748-0224 today for personal service and customized yacht insurance coverage.