Protecting Your Boat

How Is Your Boat Insurance Coverage?

Boating in Florida can be fun, entertaining and stressful especially if a hurricane is in the distance. Boat insurance is often overlooked by many boaters. Some take out the least amount of coverage on their boat thinking they won’t have a problem. Boat insurance can also protect your asset both in the water and out of the water. Storm damage is just one of the many reasons boat insurance is important.

Accidents and theft are other reasons having a good boat insurance policy is essential in protecting your vessel. Boating accidents happen when trailering, launching and while in the water. Holiday weekends heighten the risk. Every year we have clients who unfortunately have to make a claim because their boat was in a “fender bender” on the water or they ran their boat into rocks. The stories are endless, we have seen it all. Outside of accidents theft is also a problem for boaters. It happens all the time a boat sits in storage or is tied at a marina and the boat disappears. An insurance policy on your boat will protect you from these instances.

Another type of theft can happen if you go to sell your boat. Some people have fallen victim to boat traders where you leave your boat with a seller who sells other boats as well. In some cases a person’s boat has been sold without them even knowing it and the original owner still has the title to the boat! Yes this can happen so you want to ensure your boat is properly insured. If you do decide to have a boat dealer sell your boat be sure to get the agreement in writing, make sure you have insurance on your boat and check in with that dealer often to make sure your boat is still in his/her possession.

Some quick tips for you if you are in harms way and a hurricane is coming towards you….

1) if you take your boat out of the water chain it to the trailer

2) anchor your boat in the trailer and use stakes in the ground to help keep your boat from lifting off the trailer

3) put a lock on your trailer if you can’t keep the boat and trailer at your home (lock the hitch and wheels if you can)

4) leave your trailer hitched to your truck, this will be the safest way that nobody can drive off with it

5) if you do leave your boat docked and in the water – don’t put the canvas up it will most likely rip off

6) loosely tie your boat cleats to the dock – by this we mean leave slack in the lines to allow for the waves to come through….reinforce the cleats on your boat as well, check the screws

We wish you safety with your boat this hurricane season. Please take a few minutes and review your marine vessel insurance policy. It is important that you know what you have coverage on for your boat. For the best boat insurance coverage we invite you to call Gulf Coast Educators Insurance in Naples, Ft. Myers and Port Charlotte.

Boating Season

Warm Weather Means Boating Season

Now that the warm weather has come around it is time for boating season. Before you take your boat out you should check many things to ensure you and your family’s safety.boating season

• You should always check you’re to make sure your safety equipment is your boat. This includes but is not limited to a fire extinguisher, a whistle, and make sure everyone that is going to be in the boat has a life vest available in case of an emergency. You should also make sure your have ropes and anchors because the ropes can brittle and break after use for a few season
• Make sure your registration is up to date and not expired. Having an expired registration on the water could cost you a hefty fine. Also, make certain the registration sticker is on the boat.
• You should always make sure your boat has a plug and know exactly where the plug drain is located.
• The mechanics on your boat should always be checked. Replace all cracked belts and hoses that you know are not going to make it through the boating season. Check all electrical systems; turn on and test everything including battery terminal which sometimes get corroded. Also give the hull a look over to make sure there are not any spots which could leak water inside.
• The status of your boat trailer is very important also. Make sure your tires are aired up properly; and test your lights seeing if you have brake lights, turning signals, and running lights.

Using this list will ensure your families safety over this boating season. Enjoy your time on the water and be safe.