Service your winches and rinse blocks with fresh water On Deck Give each winch a quick spin. If they’re not turning freely, now is the time to strip and clean them. Windlass issues are almost always down to poor connections. Inspect these closely, especially at the foot switches, and if necessary take the connections apart, clean them, apply some petroleum jelly or dielectric grease and reassemble.
If the weather is less than ideal, take some extra measures to ensure everyone’s comfort on your cruise. Keeping comfortable and calm is a part of staying safe on the water. Remember to where a lifejacket, and PSB.
- Check the weather
- Prep Your Crew
- Get Tuned
- Check Your Canvas
- Play the Sheets
- Keep it Calm
- Head Up or Run
- Tend to the Stick
Source: Keeping Control in Heavy Air
Boating accidents. We all like to think they cannot happen to us. However, while the odds of a boating emergency are slim, particularly for those who follow the proper safety protocol, even the most diligent and careful boater can find himself or herself in an emergency. The difference between your boating accident being an inconvenience and a disaster is the difference between coming prepared and failing to do what is necessary to prepare. So what can you do to prepare your boat and your crew for the worst? Below are a few tips on preparing your boat for an accident—before and after you have left the dock.
- Have your boat inspected regularly. If you have the proper knowledge to check all of the different aspects of your boat to ensure safety, do so on a regular basis. If not, it is possible to take advantage of boat inspections given free by the US Coast Guard.
- Have lifejackets—and wear them. Many people keep their vessels stocked with a good number of lifejackets—which is of course, at least as many as there are people on the boat. However, some people make the mistake of not putting them on until an emergency occurs. This can be a problem because many accidents happen too fast to anticipate.
- Tell someone, preferably a trusted adult friend or the crew at the local marina, where you will be going and when you plan to return. This will help people realize much sooner if you have become stranded or cannot return to shore for some other reason.
- Bring some kind of signaling beacon in order to help signal help if you are in need of it. This will help the authorities locate you and rescue you if an emergency occurs.
Looking for high-tech, state of the art boating safety technology? Visit BeaconWatch today to learn more!
There are too many tragedies on the water as a result of people not wearing life vests. Whether you are young, old, a seasoned swimmer, or someone who has never swam before, you need to wear a life vest. Here are some tips to help you pick the right vest for your age, body type, and activity.
Finding the proper type of vest
Using the wrong kind of vest can be just as dangerous as wearing no vest at all. It is a general rule that life vests that inflate automatically upon immersion, and vests that are already buoyant before for hitting the water are best for children. Adults may opt for a lighter life vest that inflates manually, but in the event that someone is knocked unconscious in the water, a vest that requires no action on the wearers part to work is the safest for everyone. You should also consider what activity you need you life jacket for. An activity where you could become submerged quickly–like water skiing or canoeing– may require a move heavy duty life vest than fishing or cruising.
Finding the proper fit
You want to make sure that the vest you use was intended to be worn by someone your size. Usually, a tag on the life vest will display these details. After you find a vest that feels right, you must make sure that it can be properly secured onto your body. A life vest that fits properly should not restrict arm movement, cause shortness of breath, or cover your chin or mouth. It may take a few tries to find the vest that is perfect for you, but you should take your time to find the proper fit.
BeaconWatch is committed to facilitating water safety through a unique line of water safety products, such as the Onyx Deluxe Auto/Manual Inflatable Life Jacket. Visit us online today to learn more!
For most of the northern hemisphere, the beginning of August marks the point in which temperatures slowly begin to fall. Of course, depending on where you live, you may still continue to enjoy warm weather and sunny days for weeks–or even months–to come. But for most, at some point or another, the weather will eventually change, bringing with it cool days, changing colors, and radically different water conditions.
Despite these changes, millions of people will continue boating both professionally and recreationally. Cold weather boating a fascinating and beautiful experience, but it does require great care and thorough preparations. Moreover, it is also advisable to learn about the potential effects that cold water swimming can have.
Cold water swimming offers health benefits
First off, it is worth noting that a growing alternative health trend–covered extensively in sources such as The Guardian, asserts the physical (and, for some, the psychological) benefits of deliberate cold water swimming. Though the evidence is still inconclusive, proponents of cold water swimming argue that cold water swimming:
- Stimulates the immune system.
- Triggers endorphin production
- Improve circulation of blood.
- Exfoliates skin, helps remove impurities, and fight cellulitis.
- Improve libido.
- Burn calories fast.
The two important disclaimers that must be made: cold water swimming is not for those with heart troubles–and, once again, it must be carefully and deliberately undertaken! Here are a few basic safety rules for those who decide to venture into the world of cold water swimming.
Unexpected Falls Can Be Deadly
Because of the growing popularity of cold water swimming, it bears repeating that unexpected falls into cold water can be deadly. They can result in the victim falling into a state of shock, heart failure, stroke, hypothermia, and drowning. Should a fall occur, getting the victim out of the cold water is the first priority—the faster this is done, the higher the survival rate.
Safety Always Comes First
Whether taking a cold water swim or simply boating over cold water, the need for safety measures is heightened by low temperatures. An emergency locator beacon can aid in rapid response regardless of the situation—and can mean the difference between life and death. To learn more about emergency locator beacons, visit Beacon Watch online today.
Winterizing your recreational boat correctly is certainly one of the least enjoyable aspects of owning a boat. But it is also one of the most important. With a relatively small investment of time and money, you can insure that your boat will be functioning perfectly when springtime rolls back around. Winterization is important financially (as it saves you from making potentially costly repairs), and it is also an important element of boating safety. (After all, should something go wrong over the course of the winter, there is a chance you may not realize it until the next time you are out on the water!)
Proper winterization involves a number of distinct steps that ultimately depend upon what kind of boat you have. If you are completely new to the process, we reccomend that you check out a comprehensive guide to winterization, such as this excellent resource offered by DiscoverBoating.com.
Regardless of your experience level, however, everyone makes mistakes sometimes. A mistake in winterization can lead to a potentially dangerous situation out on the water, though–which is why it’s important to keep these frequently overlooked steps in mind.
- Perform a deep clean and diagnostic examination. Taking the time to deep clean your boat at the end of boating season is an enormous favor that your future self will really appreciate come springtime. But it is also an important safety precaution–it allows you the chance to double-check for any potential problems that have arisen over the past months.
- Fill Gas Tank. This prevents condensation from leaving water in the tank. Some boaters claim that they would rather deal with the water problem than waste an entire tank of gas–however, this is ultimately short sighted. (And, with gasoline stabilizer, it is possible to prevent your gasoline from expiring anyway.)
- Always Leave the Boat Covered. This step is frequently overlooked by those who are storing their boats in an indoor garage. Because boating upholstery can potentially cost thousands to replace, however, (and because the unexpected does happen from time to time,) the small investment of a cover is always worth it.
Always Committed to Boating Safety.
Boating safety is an ongoing commitment that requires level-headedness, careful maintenance, and an investment in safety equipment. To learn more about the latest and greatest in boating safety equipment, visit Beacon Watch online today.