Hundreds of thousands of people are preparing to enjoy another season of boating with their classic boats.
Goody Thomas, ACBS Safety Officer and Hagerty Classic Insurance want to help you enjoy another safe and fun boating season.   That is why we’ve joined forces with the United States Coast Guard to remind you of many important safe boating practices which we will share with you in this and future issues of the ACBM Magazine.

Why Should You Have a Marine Radio on Your Boat?
Let’s say you are motoring to the farthest reaches of an isolated bay when you strike an uncharted, submerged object.  You begin taking on water.  No one is around.  Do you have a radio so you can call for help?

What if you’re motoring along the river and one of your passengers begins having convulsions?  You know you must contact medical authorities immediately.  Do you have a radio?

What Type of Radio Should I Buy?
Invest in a good Very High Frequency FM (VHF FM) radio.  Its advantages are:

Good quality transmission
Strong Signal
Channels reserved for distress calls
Continuously monitored frequencies.

Citizen Band (CB) radios are not recommended due to weak signals and overcrowded frequencies.  In addition, the Coast Guard does not routinely monitor CB channels.

Do I need a Radio License or Operator’s Permit?

You must have a SHIP STATION LICENSE for your radio before operation.  An OPERATOR’S PERMIT is only required if you dock in a foreign port.  To obtain forms and additional information
contact the FCC at (202) 632-FORM. Boat often but boat safely!
The above information was generously provided by the United States Coast Guard, Boating Safety.

Speeding Up Your Boat Insurance Claim Settlement

It’s a beautiful day for boating.  Blue water, bright sun and clear sailing ahead.  That is until you run into an
unidentified submerged object.
Now  its time to submit a claim to your insurance company.  What should you do to help the process proceed quickly and fairly?
Here are some tips:

1) Take steps to protect your boat from further damage.  The policy covers the cost of doing this.  If you don’t take these steps, some of the resulting damage may not be covered.

2) File a report with the police or coast guard.  Not only is this a good idea but also most policies require it.  It is also the best way to document where and how your boat was damaged.

3)Immediately notify your insurance company.  Timely reporting is required and is the best way to get the ball rolling.  Some polices even contain a time limit within which a claim must be reported.  This is usually 90 days.

4)Make the damaged property available for the insurance company’s inspection.  Another policy requirement but this will also help assure a comprehensive scope of the damage is secured.

Following these four simple steps will help you work with your company to get you back on the water as soon as possible.  
Carbon monoxide is not often on the top of boaters’ safety checklist, but it should be. It is a dangerous and silent threat to boaters. The experts at the United States Coast Guard, ACBS Safety Officer Goody Thomas and Hagerty Classic Insurance offer the following checklist and tips to protect yourself and your passengers from
carbon monoxide poisoning.

WARNING! These conditions may cause Carbon Monoxide to accumulate:

Blockage of exhaust outlets can cause carbon monoxide to accumulate in the cabin and cockpit area, even with the hatches, window, portholes and doors closed.

Exhaust from another vessel that is docked or anchored alongside your boat can emit poisonous carbon monoxide gas into the cabin and cockpit of your boat.

The “station wagon effect”, or backdrafting, can cause carbon monoxide to accumulate inside the cabin, cockpit and bridge when operating the boat at a high bow angle or with improper or heavy loading. This “station wagon effect” can also cause carbon monoxide to accumulate inside the cabin, cockpit and bridge when the boat is underway using protective weather coverings.
Slow speeds or having a boat stopped (idling) in the water can cause carbon monoxide gas to accumulate in the cabin, cockpit and bridge. A tail wind (force of wind entering from aft section of yacht) can also increase accumulation.

At the start of every yachting voyage, it would be wise to check the following:
Make sure all exhaust clamps are in place and secure.

Look for exhaust leaking from the exhaust system components, indicated by rust and/or black streaking, water leaks, or corroded or cracked fittings.

Inspect rubber exhaust hoses for burned or cracked sections. All rubber hoses should be pliable and free of kinks.
Confirm that water flows from the exhaust outlet when the engines and generator are started.

Listen for any change in exhaust sound that could indicate an exhaust component failure.
Test the operation of each carbon monoxide detector by pressing the test button.

At the start of your yachting season it would be wise to have the following items checked by a qualified marine technician.
Replace exhaust hoses if any evidence of cracking, charring or deterioration is found.

Replace each water pump impeller and inspect the condition of the water pump housing. Replace if worn.
Inspect each of the metallic exhaust components for cracking, rusting, leaking or looseness. Pay particular attention to the cylinder head, exhaust manifold, water injection elbow, and the threaded adapter nipple between the manifold and the elbow.

Clean, inspect and confirm the proper operation of the generator cooling water anti-siphon valve.

What to do:
Schedule regular engine and exhaust system maintenance inspections
Be aware that dangerous concentrations of carbon monoxide can accumulate when a boat, generator or other fueled device is operated while the boat is at a dock or seawall or alongside another boat. Do not run the boat or equipment for an extended time under these conditions or without continuous monitoring.

Keep forward-facing hatches open, even in inclement weather, to allow fresh air circulation in accommodation spaces. When possible, run the boat so that the prevailing winds will help dissipate the exhaust.

Do not confuse carbon monoxide poisoning with seasickness or intoxication. If someone on board complains of irritated eyes, headache, nausea, weakness, or dizziness, immediately move the person to fresh air, investigate the cause and take corrective action. Seek medical attention, if necessary.

Install a carbon monoxide detector in each accommodation space on your boat. Check the detectors periodically to be sure they are functioning properly.