When you hear the phrase ‘boat safety,’ chances are you’re thinking about making sure your boat has no leaks or storm damage, is ocean safe and well maintained. Or you may consider the skills necessary to operate your water craft. But today, boat safety also refers to the secure storage of your vessel, and the use of marine security systems to keep your property from being damaged or stolen.
Let’s start with a look at boat storage. For those of you who store your vessel away from the water, boats should be placed in a locked garage or boat storage facility that is also securely locked. If you keep your boat on a trailer, always utilize a trailer hitch lock. And, be sure to park your boat off the street, in a location that makes it difficult to steal. Another good idea: place an item such as cinder blocks or other equipment behind the trailer so that there is an obstacle for any thief attempting to hook your trailer up to their own vehicle. You can also remove some of your trailer’s tires, to further slow a thief. A sturdy security chain and locking system can also be used to attach your boat to an permanent object – tree, dock or garage.
And in regard to storing marine equipment you keep on board, if you can, remove these items from your boat completely and store them separately. But if you’re leaving these items on board, keep them safe inside locked storage lockers inside the boat. And keep these lockers and your boat itself safe from potential invasion by securing the doors, hatches, and all ports with sturdy locks. Put a boat cover over your entire boat to further discourage boarding and even prying eyes. These standard safety and security measures will make your boat a less likely target for want-to-be thieves.
Now let’s turn to another important aspect of boat safety: security systems that are designed for marine use to keep your boat secure and even alert you if any unsafe conditions should develop on your water craft.
From bilge water sensors that sound an alarm if appropriate water levels are breaches to smoke, gas leak, and carbon monoxide detectors, safety alarms are just as important on a boat as they are in your home for the safety of your loved ones. or example, you may have a bilge water sensor that sounds an alarm depending on the level of water. And to prevent theft, intruder alarms will alert you if someone is on your boat when you don’t want them to be. Pressure mats, door switch alarms, continuity cables, and web cam systems can all be utilized successfully on a boat to prevent theft or vandalism.
Security information can be relayed to you via GPS or GSM systems that send message alerts should your property be violated; and local law enforcement can be alerted, too. Wired or wireless alert systems are available to show you your boat’s whereabouts as well as indicating whether access to the boat has been breached.
So include secure storage and security alarm systems when you think of boat safety – and make your boating experience secure.