Boat owners need to take precautions for hurricane season

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - With 12 to 18 named storms predicted for hurricane season this year, and up to six becoming major hurricanes, people in the Lowcountry need to prepare now. Boat owners are one group that must take special precautions to protect their property.

Move antennas to a down position, secure loose items on board and get important documents off board. Anthony Noury has five vessels with Sea Tow of Charleston and first and foremost he says when a hurricane approaches boat owners should take important documents and photographs off the boat and put them in a safe place.

"Would the boat owner have a catastrophic loss, you will have your insurance documentation, your registration, and title with you. It's best to store that with the person or policy owner of the vessel," Noury said.

Sea Tow says boat owners should be familiar with their insurance policies and photograph all valuables on board and have a plan for boat storage during a storm. For example if it will be wet-docked, make sure it is centered.

"There is extra room for the boat to move. Other boats won't come into contact with it. That gives it a lot of leeway and keeps it from getting a lot of damage... You also want to double the lines. Therefore if a line were to break it would have a secondary line holding it," Noury said.

Other expert advice:

  • If you are part of a marina or dry storage facility, check with your facility's hurricane storage policy
  • If you have a boat and trailer, deflate the tires, and attach the boat and trailer to something heavy like a tree to weigh it down
  • If you are anchoring your boat use good gear and set extra anchors as necessary

"It's so critical that people understand how dangerous a hurricane can be. If you are a live aboard on board your vessel, or if you plan on anchoring your vessel, it's very important not to ride the storm out. Leave your vessel, do not ride the storm out," Noury said.

Another great tip is to stay up to date on all weather forecasts, which you can do with the Live 5 News weather app for iPhones or Android phones and also investing in a NOAA weather radio.

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