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Old 02-09-2010, 08:30   #1
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East Coast Hurricane Tactics - Earl Is Coming !

With Earl bearing down on the East Coast, threatening NC - Main, what are you guys doing to prepare for the storm? Are you pulling your boats, entering marinas, staying on the hook? Are you staying with your boat no matter what, putting it somewhere safe and grabbing a hotel ashore if it gets really bad? What's your tactic for keeping the boat safe and yourself safe? I'm planning on living aboard on the US East Coast come 12-18months from now and this Earl has be a bit worried. I guess I knew that Hurricanes could go that far north but I was hoping to be out of the way of most big ones like Earl when in the North East during hurricane season. Your thoughts are much appreciated!

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Old 02-09-2010, 08:57   #2
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I've weathered quite a few in KW... Cat 1 or 2, I stay aboard in the marina with the obvious hurricane preps made. Stronger storms? Prep as best as possible, kiss the boat goodbye, and run away by land!

Spend some time in your local area scouting out hurricane holes, but beware... others will have them in mind as well! If you do take the boat to a HH, go early, and be considerate of other's who will arrive after you when you plan your tie up. I have seen holes that easily would hold ten boats, with ONE tied across the entrance! I have also seen those boats cut loose by late comers! If you go the HH route, you need to decide to either stay with the boat, or dink ashore and leave it on its own... hard choice there!

Unless your boat yard is WELL ABOVE any storm surge level (most aren't), don't haul out! You should have seen the Key's yards after Wilma! A well secured vessel IN the water is a lot safer.

If cruising, a HH might be your only option; I was up Shark River in the E'glades for Andrew and took a direct hit of 140kts with ZERO damage! My boat was tied like in a spiderweb though! Remember, Mangroves are tough anchors; we are lucky in the South to have them!
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Old 02-09-2010, 09:25   #3
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Check with your insurance company. They will probably pay for hurricane preparation - usually $500 or more. Enough to buy new lines and fenders at no cost to you.
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Old 02-09-2010, 09:27   #4
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Well, rather than start a new thread...what about ME?

Having ridden out a few real storms, I'm sure laugh at this George, but this is my first...or at least the strongest winds I'll have experienced anyway.

I'm anchored in pretty shallow water, close to shore, with protection on 3...maybe more like 2-1/2 sides. And lots of VERY shallow water on those unprotected sides, except for a very small channel. Here's where I am. Damn google! I'm not exactly where that marker is. That's only 1' of water, I'm just to the SE of the entrance.

The worst they're predicting here is gusts up to 40, coming mostly from the N, then up to 30 from the NE. I'm thinking, just let out some extra chain, throw the bridle on and I'll be fine...although maybe not sleeping too well?
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Old 02-09-2010, 09:36   #5
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I've been on the Gulf Coast most of my life, as has my family for 4 generations. I've been through Alicia, TS Allison, Rita, and Ike as well as many other TS. The best advice I can give is to prepare early and be willing to help your neighbors. (did a blog about it, rather than write it all out here, you can follow my sig) Hurricanes are unpredicatable and there is only so much you can do but do it early, keep a clear head and a good attitude and you should be fine.
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Old 02-09-2010, 10:51   #6
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I don't have any neighbors...and doubt I will. There is another spot, down river, a little further inland, probably a little more protected. But it's also smaller, and has the potential, to get really crowded and turn into a CF...especially considering the way everyone in NJ is freaking as if we're getting a direct hit. speaking of which, I guess he just took a turn further East? NOAA just downgraded their predictions to my area to 30 knots max.
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Old 02-09-2010, 10:55   #7
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People flipping out is to me one of the most dangerous aspects of a hurricane. Stupidity kills.

Stay safe and remember that a very real problem with these storms are the tornados that pop up around them.
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Old 02-09-2010, 11:03   #8
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I can offer one small practical bit of advice on lines - and forgive me if this is obvious to everyone:

On a sailboat, utilize the winches. If you sling your second line over a piling and back to a winch, you will have a readymade way of adjusting lines on the windward side. Without that kind of mechanical advantage, you've got no hope of doing so once the wind pipes up.
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Old 02-09-2010, 11:17   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sneuman View Post
... On a sailboat, utilize the winches. If you sling your second line over a piling and back to a winch, you will have a readymade way of adjusting lines on the windward side. Without that kind of mechanical advantage, you've got no hope of doing so once the wind pipes up.
Indeed.
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Old 02-09-2010, 11:23   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grunzster View Post
Well, rather than start a new thread...what about ME?

Having ridden out a few real storms, I'm sure laugh at this George, but this is my first...or at least the strongest winds I'll have experienced anyway.

I'm anchored in pretty shallow water, close to shore, with protection on 3...maybe more like 2-1/2 sides. And lots of VERY shallow water on those unprotected sides, except for a very small channel. Here's where I am. Damn google! I'm not exactly where that marker is. That's only 1' of water, I'm just to the SE of the entrance.

The worst they're predicting here is gusts up to 40, coming mostly from the N, then up to 30 from the NE. I'm thinking, just let out some extra chain, throw the bridle on and I'll be fine...although maybe not sleeping too well?
A good hole for the predicted blow..... BUT think of the beachfront view you'd have in a 15'-20' storm surge! I grew up in NJ (Manasquan/Toms River)... I'd run upriver as far as I could if a "real" storm were brewing. This is where I hid from Andrew....in the little squiggly channel
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Old 02-09-2010, 11:37   #11
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Just came back from getting my boat ready. Took down the main and all the dodger/bimini. Put the dingy below. Shut all the though valves. ran the engine to be sure battery was fully charged. Not too worried about my double 1" mooring lines as those will tear the boat apart before losing the war.

Only a few people were doing the same. There were a LOT of boats out in the field with all sails on, dodge and bimini up, jerry cans on the deck. Guess my biggest danger is the other boats.
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Old 02-09-2010, 11:40   #12
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Yeah, no way I'd stay in this spot if we were really getting hit. If it was coming much closer, I think my best bet from here would be across the bay, and up into the Raritan River. Higher land, much further from the Ocean, and lots oh trees to tie to. Or way up into the Rahway River.

HAHA you threw me off there. You being from NJ originally, and Shark River! Until I zoomed out, I thought that was where you rode out a storm up here.
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Old 02-09-2010, 11:40   #13
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We have different tactics based on the storm size, track, where we are etc. Here are some of our preparations in the past,
http://tinyurl.com/ktt3d7
http://tinyurl.com/my7t28
http://tinyurl.com/28hn6ff
Hope this helps. Chuck
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Old 02-09-2010, 11:42   #14
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Only a few people were doing the same. There were a LOT of boats out in the field with all sails on, dodge and bimini up, jerry cans on the deck. Guess my biggest danger is the other boats.
Prime example of why I'm staying on the hook instead of moving to a slip.
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Old 02-09-2010, 11:59   #15
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I noticed that near as I could tell no-one in the slips was doing anything to get ready at all. I think my boat is safer out in the mooring field. If it gets so bad that the moorings let loose I'm sure the slips will have been doing the hola a while and breaking apart.
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