There are many tips and tricks to berthing in marinas, many of which are obvious when you are there. These are the ones many people miss.

1. Tie your boat up securely so it doesn’t cause damage. When alongside you need a minimum of a bow, stern and two spring lines. Check out other boat lines to see what may be needed.
2. Shut off electronics when not in use and when you leave your vessel. I have heard VHF radios long into the night on unattended boats and seen navigation lights left on at the dock.
3. When rafted up, cross over the bows to get to the dock. It is not proper to cross over boats through the cockpit, it may be invading others privacy.
4. If you must use your toilet ensure that it goes into your holding tank. Never discharge your waste into a marina.
5. When refuelling or loading your vessel at a temporary loading or fuel dock, move your vessel as soon as you are done so others can get access. Don’t abuse shared dock space.
6. Marinas and dock areas are no wake zones. Most dinghies can cause larger wash than the big boats, so be very careful and drive slowly so not to disturb the waters around boats tied up in the marina.
7. Even though boating is social, respect your neighbours and keep the noise down. Remember, noise travels easily across water and not everyone might appreciate your musical taste or the sound of your generator in an otherwise peaceful setting.

Marina Safety
1. If possible, don’t let your bow extend out over the dock. It is a hazard, particularly if the anchor is protruding.
2. Using your barbecue in the marina can be a major fire hazard where fuel and vapours from other vessels in close proximity can collect.
3. Coil your lines and hoses and don’t have them cross the dock if you can avoid it. They are serious tripping hazards, particularly at night.
4. Keep an eye on people working on the deck of any boat. If someone trips and falls in, cold-water shock can prevent people from calling out for help and can cause water inhalation. Maintaining dock safety is the best way to avoid potential disasters and even loss of life.

A marina is a community where access to shared facilities increases our comfort and therefore our enjoyment. Facilities and other boaters needs should be respected.

Boating is meant to be easy!

Enjoy your boating.

Best wishes

John Sanders