Well. the Holiday Season is upon us. While for most of the country that means curling up by the fire with a hot chocolate – here in SOFLA, boating season is still in full swing!
In fact, right now, yacht owners will likely spend even more time taking their boats out entertaining friends and family reveling at sea and throwing Holiday Parties with a tropical flair!
With more yacht owners, and maybe less experienced yacht charterers taking boats out for Holiday Parties and New Year’s Celebrations, here are some valuable Holiday safety tips for boat owners to keep in mind!
Most Holiday parties will be held at night, or at least stretch into the hours of darkness. This is especially true if you are taking your motor yacht at filled with guests to party and watch New Year’s Eve fireworks displays. Boating at night is very different than during the day, and presents its own series of safety challenges. If you are planning such a party:
- A designated driver when partying on land is smart; on the water, it’s a must! If you do not have your own full-time captain, designate a sober skipper to stay at the wheel for the whole time of the party, and who will be responsible for getting everyone back safely when the display is finished or the party is over.
- Wear life vests. I know a bulky orange PFD may not exactly go with cocktail attire, but the US Coast Guard recommends that you and your guests all wear certified PFDs when anchored to look at fireworks, as people will often lean too far over rails, craning to get a better view.
- Remember, things look very different at night. The visual navigation markers you rely on during the day may be invisible. Chart your route to your party spot in advance, and if your yacht is so equipped, use GPS-enabled electronics, or FLIR night vision, to help you find it, if necessary.
- If you are headed to see a New Year’s Eve fireworks display, always listen to the Coast Guard or other maritime authorities as to where they may direct you to safely anchor to view fireworks away from sparks and ash.
- It may be very tempting to invite a lot of people for a Holiday Soiree on your yacht. But be conscious of the weight restrictions of your vessel, do not overload it with more passengers than it is equipped to handle. Do not go by the number of seats, or the number of cabins, your vessel’s passenger capacity will be found in the owner’s manual.
A Holiday party at sea can be a once in a lifetime experience. Have a great time, and make sure all you create are happy memories, by following some simple safety tips.
Happy and SAFE Holidays to you and yours from all of us at Florida Yacht Management and On Demand Yachting!
Operating a motor yacht can be costly. You can reduce your expenses, and avoid costly repairs by keeping her well maintained. On Demand yachting from FYM can help. If you would like to learn more, or if you have any questions or comments about this blog post, do not hesitate to contact our Yacht Management specialists, or call us at (954) 900-9968.