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Old 23-08-2014, 20:54   #1
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Are there any Laws that State a Vessel can take Refuge in a Marina for a Storm?

We just had a situation, in The Bahamas, where a Marina manager refused to give dockage to a boat trying to seek refuse for a Tropical Storm. The reason for this was, lack of insurance. The boat owners offered to sign a waver and agree to pay for any damage that may be related to their boat. They were still refused dockage. I have heard of the "Any port in a storm" but, is there any laws protecting boat owners who take refuse in public or private properties, to avoid being caught out in a storm?
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Old 23-08-2014, 21:01   #2
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Re: Are there any laws that state a vessel can take refuse in a Marina for a storm?

I doubt the individual would have had the personal resources to cover the maximum potential damage.

If a private facility I think they have the right to allow whom they want.

Sailing around without liability insurance and not knowing where they will hole up in a storm says more about the sailors than the marina.

It's not as if the potential of a tropical storm is unheard of in the summer...
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Old 23-08-2014, 21:07   #3
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Are there any laws that state a vessel can take refuse in a Marina for a storm?

Most marinas on St Thomas have written in their contracts that all boats must leave the marina for a named storm. Yes, leave! The marina owners know that boats can destroy the marina.


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Old 23-08-2014, 21:17   #4
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Re: Are there any laws that state a vessel can take refuse in a Marina for a storm?

Same here in Bundaberg Town Marina: everyone must leave and find shelter elsewhere, and they sink the docks for the duration of the flood that follows the storm.

In New Caledonia, liability insurance is also required for marinas, and is in most marinas these days.

So yes, they can refuse you refuge. But the any port in a storm idea would refer to an anchorage, not a marina.

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Old 23-08-2014, 21:20   #5
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Re: Are there any laws that state a vessel can take refuse in a Marina for a storm?

Sometimes a marina is the last place you'd want to be anyway....

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Old 24-08-2014, 07:08   #6
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Re: Are there any laws that state a vessel can take refuse in a Marina for a storm?

In this case, it is a 35 ft boat that lives on a mooring 10 miles from the only Marina on the island. They have used this marina for hurricanes twice in the last few years, we both have safely rode out a cat 4 and a cat 2 hurricane there. The insurance requirement is new. Luckily, the storm has now turned more north and we are out of the cone. But, if a major storm was heading straight at the island, this would be the ONLY safe refuse.


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Old 24-08-2014, 07:11   #7
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Re: Are there any laws that state a vessel can take refuse in a Marina for a storm?

Quote:
Originally Posted by davecalvert View Post
We just had a situation, in The Bahamas, where a Marina manager refused to give dockage to a boat trying to seek refuse for a Tropical Storm.
You mean 'refuge.'

As noted above many marinas have clauses in their contracts that require boats to leave in the event of a named storm, even existing long-term tenants.

As ReefMagnet asked, why would you want to be in a marina with all kinds of hard objects that can poke a hole in your boat? I've spent three or four hurricanes (not direct hits) on my own ground tackle. I feel strongly I am safer there than in a marina.

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I have heard of the "Any port in a storm" but, is there any laws protecting boat owners who take refuse in public or private properties, to avoid being caught out in a storm?
"Any port in a storm" is just a saying without any basis in law that I'm aware of.

By the way, who do you propose protect the marina owner from the damage created by boats and the lost income during repairs?
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Old 24-08-2014, 07:57   #8
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Re: Are there any laws that state a vessel can take refuse in a Marina for a storm?

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Same here in Bundaberg Town Marina: everyone must leave and find shelter elsewhere, and they sink the docks for the duration of the flood that follows the storm.


Ann

As a fellow Bundy marina customer (I asume you mean Bundaberg Port Marina as Mid-Town marina is no longer) - where did you hear this? They certainly didn't insist everyone left the marina during the last two cyclone/flood events here. Most certainly did not sink any docks or fingers (although they did suffer some damage due to flood waters).
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Old 24-08-2014, 12:40   #9
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Re: Are there any laws that state a vessel can take refuse in a Marina for a storm?

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Originally Posted by Rubikoop View Post
Most marinas on St Thomas have written in their contracts that all boats must leave the marina for a named storm. Yes, leave! The marina owners know that boats can destroy the marina.


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My marina is the same. Traveling recently, I was refused dockage at two marinas because of a pending hurricane. One marina agreed to take me and put me in a safe creek at their boatyard at a greatly increased "storm rate".

I don't know of any laws stating that a marina must accept your boat for dockage. I wouldn't expect there to be laws like that.
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Old 24-08-2014, 12:47   #10
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Re: Are there any laws that state a vessel can take refuse in a Marina for a storm?

I have seen wording on marina contracts in florida that states you may be asked to LEAVE the marina if a tropical storm is imminent!
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Old 24-08-2014, 12:50   #11
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Re: Are there any laws that state a vessel can take refuse in a Marina for a storm?

In a weather or other emergency, safe harbour is all that's owed. Can't find where you're also owed dockage/mooring, shore-power and water, wifi...
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Old 24-08-2014, 15:18   #12
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Re: Are there any laws that state a vessel can take refuse in a Marina for a storm?

Quote:
Originally Posted by shufti View Post
As a fellow Bundy marina customer (I asume you mean Bundaberg Port Marina as Mid-Town marina is no longer) - where did you hear this? They certainly didn't insist everyone left the marina during the last two cyclone/flood events here. Most certainly did not sink any docks or fingers (although they did suffer some damage due to flood waters).
Shufti,

I have not been up to Mid-Town, even by dinghy, for about 4 or 5 yrs. So, if Mid-Town is no longer there, I'd think it had been taken out in a flood.

No, I did not mean Bundaberg Port Marina. You're quite right in what you wrote about them. But when Mid-Town was still functional that was their policy. It was accepted by everyone, maybe a little griping.

Have you seen the sign near the bridge there where Mid-Town used to be, that shows where the high water mark was in one of the floods last century?
That's one reason we don't cyclone season there. Overused phrase, but awesome to imagine the river that high.

Ann
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Old 24-08-2014, 23:31   #13
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Re: Are there any laws that state a vessel can take refuse in a Marina for a storm?

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Originally Posted by Lake-Effect View Post
In a weather or other emergency, safe harbour is all that's owed. Can't find where you're also owed dockage/mooring, shore-power and water, wifi...
Exactly right!

If for some reason I was committed to a safe harbour (behind breakwater) and no dock was available..... If practical, I would find a way to anchor/ shore tie to solid structures without touching their docks and remain on my boat to manage any chaffe.

No way would I allow a marina to force me into unprotected waters, but I would have been mad at myself for not having taken more reliable precautions.
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Old 25-08-2014, 05:21   #14
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Re: Are there any laws that state a vessel can take refuse in a Marina for a storm?

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................... No way would I allow a marina to force me into unprotected waters, but I would have been mad at myself for not having taken more reliable precautions.
Read your marina contract. Many require the boats to be removed in the case of named storms. Some have the ability to put your boat on land and will do so (for a fee).
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Old 25-08-2014, 06:09   #15
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Re: Are there any laws that state a vessel can take refuse in a Marina for a storm?

The marina I stay at rules say above a Cat III storm, you have to vacate, but I've had several outhouse lawyers tell me that they can't legally make you go, which is it, I assume they in fact can make you leave, even if you have no where to go?
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