For many people across the United States and further afield, owning their very own boat is certainly one of the highest ambitions on their bucket list. Yet, unfortunately, circumstances mean that they never get to achieve this dream.
If you are one of the lucky ones who are fortunate enough to be able to go ahead with your plan of buying and regularly sailing your own boat, then amidst all the excitement, you must familiarize yourself with the most important things you need to know.
Insurance Is an Absolute Must
The similarities between a car and a boat are naturally few and far between, and accomplished sailors often feel frustrated when people who have even stepped foot on a boat claim that they could sail one easily.
However, one similarity which is just as important when owning and running both modes of transport is boat insurance, and the more comprehensive and inconclusive your insurance policy, the better. Should you suffer a boating accident of any kind at any point, make sure you keep the contact details of a reputable insurer, such as those at https://www.rblaw.net/practices-boating-accidents, who will be able to assist you.
Learn Basic Boat Maintenance
The only way you can protect your new boat as much as possible from potential accidents and issues is to ensure that you regularly service the entire boat, paying particular attention to the engine.
However, it is certainly not good enough to know how to conduct a thorough walkaround if you still have no idea to fix or at least temporarily sort any issues you do find. Even though any proper boat repairs should always be carried out by a professional boat mechanic, it is strongly advisable to learn how to complete smaller tasks.
It is your duty to yourself, your fellow sailors, and indeed any precious cargo you have onboard in the form of loved ones and pets, to always be entirely responsible and safe.
Basic boat safety for the beginner includes, amongst a myriad of others, the following points:
- At least one B-1 type fire extinguisher (or two if your boat is over 26 feet).
- Safety equipment, including medical kits, paddles, flashlights, and flags.
- Always plan maneuvers and turns in good time.
- Keep a constant watch over the weather and any nautical updates .
- Remember sunscreen, even on cloudy days.
Storage on Your Boat
The final main consideration when it comes to buying your first boat is where you are going to keep all your belongings, not to mention those of your guests and even though there is limited storage, especially on sailing models, the capacity does vary from boat to boat.
When kitting out your boat ready for its first proper journey on the ‘high seas’, keep storage in mind and invest in several waterproof cabin bags for items on deck, as well as a large and durable marine rope organizer to hang on the side.
Inside the cabin, secure cargo nets on the side of lockers and hanging cabinets to keep heavier or more delicate items safe and apart from other items in the same space.