Masthead28_Dec2013 H.pub - page 34

The Masthead
News & Views
WATERWAY BILL FOR
BOATERS
ALEXANDRIA, Va., October 31, 2013:
A bill that the US House of Represen-
tatives just passed with overwhelming
bipartisan support, H.R. 3080, the
Water Resources Reform and Devel-
opment Act of 2013, has the Boat
Owners Association of The United
States (BoatUS) seeing potential
benefits for recreational boaters.
“We have national highway and air
transportation systems,” said BoatUS
Government Affairs Senior Program
Coordinator David Kennedy. “This is
the first time since 2007 that Con-
gress is moving forward with a much
needed transportation bill for our
waterways, and boaters stand to gain
from it.”
Recreational boaters will benefit from
language in the bill directing the Army
Corps of Engineers to target funding
to emerging harbors, or those that
ship less than one million tons of
cargo annually. H.R. 3080 allocates
10% of the total amount of expendi-
tures that go to waterway operation
and maintenance costs to be used at
these emerging harbors. While these
harbors and waterways may not carry
the millions of tons of cargo of the big-
ger ports, they play a vital role in sup-
porting recreational boating and com-
mercial fishing.
The bill also takes some innovative
approaches to waterway development
policy such as streamlining project
studies and looking at all of the
individually authorized projects in the
Great Lakes Navigation System as a
single comprehensive system that
recognizes the interdependence of the
projects. Additionally, the Corps is
directed to assess the operation and
maintenance needs of the Atlantic
Intracoastal Waterway and the Gulf
Intracoastal Waterway, taking into
consideration their benefits to recrea-
tion, commercial fishing and naviga-
tion.
Source: Boat US, Oct. 31, 2013
HURT BOATS
A STUDY OUTLINING THE 10
COSTLIEST WAYS BOATS
COME TO GRIEF.
PUTTING THOUSANDS OF BOAT/
US INSURANCE CLAIM FILES UN-
DER A MICROSCOPE
It’s a cross between the
CSI
and
Cold
Case
TV show crime dramas: taking a
look back through the thousands of
dusty, old settled boat insurance
claims files to identify patterns that
can teach today’s boaters how to
avoid becoming a statistic. That’s
exactly what the BoatUS Marine
Insurance publication,
Seaworthy,
did
in the recent feature, “Top Ten
BoatUS Marine Insurance Program
Claims,” which appears in the October
2013 issue.
“The last time BoatUS did such a de-
tailed analysis was in 2005, and this
kind of information is not available
from anyone else in the industry,” said
Seaworthy
editor Beth Leonard. “The
time seemed right to revisit our find-
ings and share them with boaters so
they can learn from other’s mistakes.”
Here’s the list of the top ten claims in
terms of dollar value over the last
eight years, along with some tips that
could help prevent becoming a statis-
tic, or if you’re simply unlucky, lessen
the damage:
#10. Lightning: Make
sure to haul out your boat after a
lightning strike to check for “exit
wounds” that can compromise the
hull’s integrity.
#9. Theft: 90% of boats are stolen on
their trailers. Make it as difficult as
possible to simply hitch up and run.
#8. Injury: Many injury claims involve
inexperienced guests. Be sure to warn
your non-boating friends about wakes,
waves, slippery surfaces, and other
hazards.
#7. Grounding: Accurate charts –
whether paper, electronic, or on a mo-
bile device – and a depth sounder are
your best defense against grounding.
#6. Collision: Most collisions result
from some combination of three
factors: inattention, blind spots, and
too much speed.
#5. Fire/explosion: Faulty wiring
causes most fires; most explosions
result from fueling issues.
#4. Striking a submerged object: If
you hear a loud clunk from down
under, stop and look in the bilge, and,
if you find any water coming in, haul
out the boat to check for structural
damage as soon as possible.
#3. Weather/wind: Keeping your boat
in a well-protected location away from
trees is the best way to protect it from
non-hurricane weather damage.
#2. Sinking: Check, squeeze, and tug
all fittings below the waterline at least
once a season to make sure your boat
stays afloat.
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