Everyone in the world is navigating uncharted waters amid Covid-19. As businesses begin to re-open so will some parks and waterways. As we make our way towards a new normal, we must take precautionary measures for a safe boating season. If you are seeking medical advice, contact your medical professional. The tips contained in this article are for those who want helpful tips on boating amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Is it safe to go out?
The decision to go out involves a few factors, one of which is deeply personal. If you or a family member is sick, do not go out. You, the sick family member, and all other household members should stay at home. You should also stay at home if your state has a current shelter-in-place-order. This may be disappointing if you fall into the cruiser category because you’ll have to forgo those early season excursions. As a responsible adult, you understand that this is for your safety. On the other hand, if the veil in your state has started to lift and the waterways are open, follow these suggested tips.
Cleaning and Disinfecting Your Boat and Equipment
Boats may have somewhat of an advantage on airborne germs since they are out in the open air rather than the inside of homes, offices, and stores. When not fully underway, open those hatches.
Before getting out on the water, it is good practice to spray down your boat. This is especially true for saltwater vessels. The water pressure could knock down some of the germs. Door handles, hatch latches, lifelines, stations, and any other surfaces should be disinfected. The consensus at large is that this must be done often. There is no cure and no one time fix for the Coronavirus. We must take repeated precautionary measures.
Is Your Boating Insurance Up to Date?
There are numerous reasons why having boating insurance is beneficial. Similar to auto insurance, it is tailored to your specific needs. Not only is Covid-19 concern, but also other undesirable outcomes. Making sure that your boating insurance is up to date can protect you in the event of an unexpected accident in which you or others are hurt or your boat is damaged. Stay safe on the water and also do your part to prevent financial loss.
4 Main Insurance Benefits All Boaters Should Have:
- Investment protection
- Medical coverage
- Protection from lawsuits
- Emergency assistance & towing
Social distancing is more important now than it has been in our lifetime. There are things that you can do to help keep you and your family safe. Practice social distancing on your boat, at boat ramps, and fuel docks. Also, maintain distance while on the water. The only people you should be boating with should be the ones in your immediate household. If there is someone loading or unloading at boat ramps or courtesy docks, avoid using them until they are free. Now is not the time to raft up with another boat or beach your boat right next to someone else’s boat.
Continue to practice the same precautionary measures that have been set forth at this time. Wash your hands frequently, wear masks when needed, and keep a distance of 6ft between you and a person who may be infected. Use protection such as face masks and gloves when necessary. Never touch high-use surfaces such as gas pump handles or the handrails at a boat ramp without gloves. Latex, nitrile, or vinyl work best. Be sure to use something to provide a barrier between contaminated surfaces and your skin.
Overall, be sure you plan your outing ahead of time, and keep safe. Also, keep yourself up to date on any possible closures and information about your intended destination port, region, state, or town. Find out if there are current restrictions. Find out where medical facilities are located and if they are at capacity.