Atlantic Hurricane Season Starts June 1st – Is Your Yacht Ready?
The 2016 Atlantic hurricane season came to a close on November 30th. In all, there were 15 named storms and seven hurricanes that formed in the Atlantic Basin in 2016, in what was considered an “above average season.”
The 2016 Hurricane season saw the end of the Florida’s “hurricane drought” that had lasted for more than a decade, when Hurricane Hermine pushed inland near St. Marks, Florida, early, in September as a Category 1 Storm. Prior to that, Hurricane Wilma was the last hurricane to make landfall in the Sunshine State, in October 2005.
But the big story of Hurricane Season 2016 was Matthew. Despite dire early predictions, the most populated areas of South Florida were spared a direct hit from Matthew but still it was a devastating storm particularly for boaters. According to BoatUS, Matthew caused an estimated $110 million in damage to recreational boats, as the once Category 5 storm barreled through and off shore of four coastal states.
Predictions for the 2017 Atlantic Hurricane Season
The earliest predictions for the Atlantic Hurricane Season, which begins soon, on June 1st, are in, and for now, officials are predicting a “near average season,” which would make it less severe than 2016. According to an outlook just released by The Weather Company, an IBM company, 2017 should see, “a total of 12 named storms, six hurricanes and two major hurricanes, which matches the 30-year average (1981-2010) for the Atlantic basin.”
The University of Colorado has predicted a similar season with 11 named storms. Other forecasts, such as the official NOAA forecast, are not in yet.
However, yacht owners should not let the predictions of a milder season than last year, lull them into any sense of security, remember, it only takes one! Yacht owners need to have a hurricane preparedness plan in place as hurricane season approaches, each and every year despite the seasonal outlook.
The Time for Yacht Owner’s Hurricane Preparedness Plan Is Now!
In the wake of Hurricane Mathew, as BoatUS and other maritime experts pointed out, many boat owners were spared significant damage to their vessels because they were properly prepared. With the 2017 Atlantic Hurricane season only a few short weeks away, it is way past time to review your Hurricane Preparedness Plan!
If your boat is docked in an area at high-risk for hurricanes such as Florida, most boat insurance companies will insist you have a hurricane plan in place. 26 North Yachts can help you to develop your hurricane preparedness plan along with our sister company, Florida Yacht Management (FYM).
Yachts that sign up for FYM’s On Demand Yachting solution will be docked in Marina Bay. Marina Bay is what local insurers refer to as a “hurricane hole,” meaning that its location is a safe distance inland, and less subject to the dangers of storm surge. If your yacht cannot be accommodated with dockage in Marina Bay, FYM provides captain services to move your vessel to other insurance company designated hurricane holes.
In addition to making sure your yacht is secure in a safe “hurricane hole,” we will provide your insurance company with all the details of your hurricane plan in writing, to prove that you have done everything humanly possible to protect your motor yacht.
26 North Yachts’ Hurricane Plan in Action
If your vessel is signed up with FYM, the following will occur in the event of a storm:
The hurricane plan swings into effect as soon as a Tropical Storm Warning is issued by NOAA. At that time all vessels currently docked in Marina Bay will be secured in Marina Bay, 4 miles inland, west of I-95 on the New River in Fort Lauderdale Florida.
2525 Marina Bay Drive West, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33312. Vessels located in
alternate locations will receive the same preparations, as follows:
- All available fenders and docklines will be used to secure the
vessels to the docks/floating docks.
- All removable canvas, cushions, and loose deck equipment will be
removed and stored indoors.
- All hatches and seams will be blue taped.
Your vessel’s LOA determines Line Detail, as follows:
- Under 60’ = Doubled 1⁄2” Lines (Tenders Included)
- 60’ – 100’ = Doubled 3⁄4” Lines
- 100’+ = Doubled 1” Lines
- All Vessels will receive Nylon Braided Lines with locations as follows:
- 2 on Bow, 2 on Stern, 4 Spring Lines
For all yachts we will:
- Deploy anchors if deemed necessary.
- Photo documentation of preparations.
Hurricanes and tropical storms can be unpredictable. However, one thing you can be sure of is that you have a better chance of protecting your boat, if you work with experts who understand the value of being prepared.
For more information on how to personally prepare, and protect your home or business during hurricane season, visit FEMA.
You can see live coverage of any approaching storms or bad weather at stormpulse.com.
It’s not always easy to stay on top of what’s new in motor yachts. If you would like to benefit from our expertise in these areas, or if you have any questions or comments about this blog post, do not hesitate to contact our Sales Specialists, or call us at 954-900-9988.