JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Damage caused by your boat during a hurricane is your responsibility, so have a plan and to protect your boat.
Bridges are locked down before an evacuation is ordered -- generally 24 hours before a storm hits -- so you need to secure your boat and move it to a safe harbor long before the warning and evacuation.
- Keep fuel and water tanks filled.
- Be sure batteries are charged and bilge pumps are operational.
- If you plan to trailer your boat to the mainland, you must do so before an evacuation order is issued.
- Owners of large crafts that must remain in the water must secure their vessels in a predetermined anchorage or mooring area (there are very few places in the Keys).
- Keep sufficient tie lines and chafing gear, anchors and anchor line, and any other equipment necessary to secure your boat in the water.
- Monitor NOAA Weather radio.
- Never stay aboard your boat in a hurricane.