Yacht Hurricane Preparedness

hurrican warning

Are you prepared for hurricane season? Protecting your marine investment consists of more than just having sufficient yacht insurance, although comprehensive coverage is very important. Your best defense includes a simple plan that can be quickly executed.  It will help you make good choices fast, even under pressure.

Tasks to be completed well in advance.

Review your contract. Your marina, dock, or storage facility contract to determine what steps you are obliged to take in the event of a hurricane warning. Take the opportunity to also find out what the facility’s hurricane plan entails. Ensure these details are recorded in your plan.

Evaluate your insurance. Review your yacht insurance policy well in advance of sever storms. Aside from benefiting from adequate coverage and extras like hurricane haul-out protection or marine salvage, it is essential to have the basics in place. Insurance companies will not take new insurance applications or requests for increased coverage once a hurricane or superstorm is predicted to hit an area.

Communicate. Ensure that someone trustworthy and capable knows your plan in case you aren’t able to take appropriate action. It is always wise to have a backup – or extra help – when disaster strikes.

Practice. Execute a mock run through of your plan to test how long it takes. A test run is valuable for timing and practice.

Remove. Make a list of all the items that should be removed from your yacht if a hurricane is predicted. This might include electronic items, sails, and other expensive equipment.

Supplies. Get the supplies you will need in advance to secure your yacht. It is better to have items such as dock lines, chafe guards, fenders, and duct tape before a big storm hits than having to fight crowds of last-minute panicked boat owners.

Elements to consider in your storm plan. 

Watch. Monitor weather conditions and be ready to take action. Ideally, you will have between 48 and 72 hours to prepare.

Find shelter. If your boat is on water with a hurricane en route, find a safe harbor. Somewhere sheltered from the open seas and protected by trees is best, and a sandy shore is even better – much gentler for a yacht to be washed up here than on rocks.

Secure your yacht. Protecting your yacht requires thought about the damaging forces of a hurricane: driving winds, lashing waves, and high water (also known as surge). Consider how you will secure your yacht at a dock or in storage. To guard against high tides inland, longer dock lines correctly positioned can protect your vessel. If you need to leave your yacht at a fixed dock, the odds of your vessel surviving a hurricane are greatly improved when you use longer dock lines and chafe guards carefully arranged around your boat—almost like a spider web. Boat U.S. and other marine resources have fantastic illustrations to demonstrate this method.

Store your yacht. If your yacht is stored inland, secure the vessel and trailer with strong ropes or chains to something like pad eyes. It is also a good idea to remove some air from the trailer tires and secure them with cement blocks.

Be proactive. Review your yacht or boat coverage with the marine insurance professionals at Global Marine Insurance today. Our boat insurance specialists can help with all your recreational and commercial marine insurance needs.

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