What’s on your checklist for a boating trip? Navigation, life preservers, boat insurance, towels, first aid kits, food, and water? Before you leave the dock, the last thing you should do is make sure you have enough fuel for whatever the outing calls for.
Running out of gas can be nerve-wracking and scary if you don’t know what to do (and even if you are prepared). Even experienced boaters find themselves stranded, so don’t think you’re the only one. If you do find yourself without gas, these steps will help you handle the situation and get back to shore safely.
When you notice you are out of gas, the first thing you need to do is shut out worst-case scenarios and concentrate on what you can control: eliminating the panic and figuring a way out of your current situation. Especially if there are children aboard. When you panic, you’ll make everyone uncomfortable and scared, which could cause an even bigger emergency. Take a deep breath and realize there is a rational way out of your situation.
Call for Help
For your own safety and the safety of others, there should always be at least one cell phone on board. If there is no cell phone onboard, check to see if there is a radio to reach someone or if you are able to flag down another boater.
Set your anchor so you don’t drift toward rocks, shallow water, any other potentially hazardous areas or so you don’t float out further as well. If you’ve radioed or called someone, you want to make sure they’re able to find you, and if you don’t set the anchor down you’ll float further from where you told rescue you would be.
It’s best to stay put when you’re lost; someone is bound to come across you whether it’s the rescue sent out for you or another passing boat.
Stay Aware of Surroundings
Take in the little details, such as the sun changing position, certain rocks or trees, water-lilies, or anything that stands out to you. Make a mental note of these and any landmarks to help you figure out where you are, assist the rescue team to find you, and/or stay away from potentially dangerous areas.
Make Safety a Priority
Make sure you and any passengers drink plenty of water. If it’s a sunny day hopefully you can keep up on sunscreen applications and if it’s a cold day hopefully you have blankets to stay warm. If you brought food, remember to eat to keep energy levels up. You will want to do everything you can to eliminate exhaustion and dehydration.
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.