Hurricane Preparation Guidance

The industry estimation is that as many as 50% of the boats damaged at fixed docks during hurricanes could have been saved by using better dock lines: lines that were longer, larger, arranged better, and/or protected against chafing. Independent studies have shown that boats stored ashore were far less likely to sustain damage than those kept in the water. It is not advised that you keep your boat on a lift or davit since it would be extremely vulnerable to storm surge. Waters will likely rise higher than the boat can be raised. If possible, boats on lifts or davits should be taken off and stored ashore.

In water

  • A spider web formation should be used.
  • Strip all loose gear, bimini tops, exterior cushions, isinglass, outriggers, main sails and headsails, and canvas
  • The more lines and anchors, the
  • Tape the seals on all opening windows and deck hatches to prevent leakage from wind driven rain and

 Your vessel’s LOA determines Line Detail, as follows:

  • Under 30’ = 4 – 6 lines for normal conditions to be doubled in the event of a Named windstorm. Line diameter to be minimum of1⁄2”
  • 30’ – 60’ = 8 lines for normal conditions to be doubled in the event of a Named windstorm. Line diameter to be minimum of3⁄4”
  • 60’ – 80’ = 10 lines for normal conditions to be doubled in the event of a Named windstorm. Line diameter to be minimum of3⁄4”
  • 80’+ = 12 lines for normal conditions to be doubled in the event of a Named windstorm. Line diameter to be minimum of1”

Ashore

  • Strip all loose gear, bimini tops, exterior cushions, isinglass, outriggers, main sails and headsails, and canvas
  • Tape the seals on all opening windows and deck hatches to prevent leakage from wind driven rain and salt
  • Tape covers over the navigational displays, stereo units,
  • Using jackstands alone is not enough as over time, the hull can be easily worked out of position by wind gusts and rising water is of course also a
  • Jackstands should be anti-slip and be chained together to prevent movement. If the ground beneath the jackstands is anyother than concrete, a minimum of 3/4” plywood should be placed under each
  • Using a minimum of 2 straps and/or 4 mooring lines positioned evenly ensure that your boat is secured to some form of anchor point such as eyes set in concrete or helical anchors drilled into the ground. Use straps with little or no stretch to
  • According to industry experts, over the past few hurricanes, this technique of anchoring and strapping down boats ashore has proved to be extremely effective in minimizing the amount of damage seen. Straps placed amidships is much more effective in preventing the vessel from overturning.

Davits and Lifts

  • Tie the boat securely to its lifting machinery and adjacent pilings to prevent it from swinging or drifting
  • Use fenders anywhere it could come into contact with pilings and lift your
  • Strip all loose gear, bimini tops, exterior cushions, isinglass, outriggers, main sails and headsails, and canvas
  • Tape the seals on all opening windows and deck hatches to prevent leakage from wind driven rain and
  • Tape covers over the navigational displays, stereo units,

Trailered Boats

  • Block the
  • Wooded blocks placed between the trailer’s frame and springs supports the added
  • If stored outdoors secure the trailer to trees/buildings/ground or with anchors or augers.
  • Strip all loose gear, bimini tops, canvas covers, electronics, and then lash the boat to the
  • Tape covers over the navigational displays, stereo units, etc

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This guest blog is by

Lina S. Jayme, CIC AAI, CPIW
President

Pacific Marine & Energy Resources, Inc.  

Email: lina@pac-mar.com