As the seasons change, many people begin to pull their boats out of winter storage. It is time to hit the water again.
However, changing seasons always bring changes in the weather. During these times of warm-up, the chances of severe weather drastically increase.
Your boat faces unique weather risks. You will likely keep your boat at least partially on the water for the season. You need to do everything you can to protect your boat from weather-related damages.
Boat Insurance and Weather
Boat insurance policies are often very comprehensive. They usually cover you for a variety of different perils, weather among them. However, weather coverage for boats does vary. Like with every type of insurance, your boat policy may include or exclude coverage for certain weather events.
Make sure when you buy the policy that you know what weather allowances your policy makes. Should certain weather threaten, you may have to secure your boat to fully cover your risks for the boat. Simply leaving your boat out to face a hurricane is not responsible ownership. Such neglect could lead insurance to deny your claim.
Protecting Your Boat Before Weather Strikes
As weather threatens, you should take steps to protect your boat. Doing so can help you reduce insurance liabilities and lessen potential damages. By protecting the boat, you can attempt to keep any damages to your boat within the limits of your policy.
There are ways you can protect your boat in the event of weather. Keep these tips in mind:
- First and foremost, never use your boat when severe weather threatens. If weather begins to change while you are on an excursion, come back to safe harbor immediately.
- When docking your boat, make sure you secure it in a safe way. Many boaters dock their boats in docking sheds, offering an extra shield in the event of weather. If you don’t have access to a docking shed, you have other options. Make sure you use secure moorings and invest in covers to shield the boat from the elements.
- Store away any attachments to your boat when you finish an excursion. Take down your sail and store it appropriately. Shut down your navigational and electronic systems.
If clear and present weather damages threaten, do what you can to protect your boat. Flooding, drought, thunderstorms, hurricanes and heavy rains are all potential threats to boats. If you have advance warning, it is often a good idea to take your boat out of the water and store it on dry land. In some cases, insurance companies offer financial incentives to help policyholders relocate boats.
Talk to your insurance agent about the weather coverage your boat insurance offers. In many cases, your agent can develop a comprehensive policy that meets your local needs.