Understanding the Dangers of Swimming in Marinas

What better way to beat the heat than going for a swim in your local marina? While many would argue this is the best part about boating in the spring and summer seasons, there are some unknown perils lurking in marina waters. As we explore the common yet unknown dangers of swimming in marina waters, warn your boaters of these threats and ensure your Marina Liability Insurance is up-to-date and effective to mitigate potential loss.

Poisoning from carbon monoxide.

It’s a common misconception that  you can only suffer from carbon monoxide poisoning while indoors. However, this is false. According to The Marinas, it is emitted through a boat’s drive motors or generators and can easily reach lethal concentrations from houseboats and cruisers while idling or at slow cruise speeds. Many boats route their fumes from the exhaust under swim platforms, exposing them to carbon monoxide poisoning. If swimmers start to experience nausea or dizziness, they should exit the water immediately and get fresh air.

Electrical shock.

Unbeknownst to most boaters, many boats leak some of their electrical current into the surrounding water. Whoever comes into contact with this current can face severe injury and even death. Even the most cognizant marina operators can’t prevent every potential electrical risk, so warn your swimmers of this before they set out on the water.


This one is a bit more obvious, but still should be addressed. In a crowded marina with boats and people throughout, drivers can’t always see every person in the water. Make sure your boaters are comfortable with their vessels, are properly trained, and implement the necessary safety procedures before starting their engines.

Polluted waters.

Urban runoff and sediment can pollute neighboring marinas. Warn your boaters of the potential contamination risks they face in addition to waterborne pathogens, chemical spills, electrical currents, and grease.

About Mariners Insurance

Mariners General Insurance Group was founded in 1959 to protect boat owners and marine business clients. We are marine insurance experts, and insure boats worldwide – in every ocean on the planet. Marine insurance is critical if you own a boat or nautical business. Trust the professionals with all of your Boat Insurance needs – trust Mariners Insurance. Call us at (800) 992-4443 any time you have questions or concerns about insurance for your vessel or marine business.