Woman to Woman

Why you need a float plan

By Capt. Katherine Redmond

In March 2009, four strong, healthy athletes, two of whom were NFL football players, went fishing off Florida’s Gulf Coast. Forty-six hours later, three had been lost at sea.

Their story offers so many lessons to us boaters that I must elaborate. But if you remember only one lesson, let it be this: Always file a float plan before going out into open water.

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Flu, common cold or COVID?

By Gino Bottino, MD

Even with COVID-19 soaring, we need to remember that winter is also cold and flu season.

In the United States, more days of work (and probably play) are lost to colds and flu than any other illness, and mortality remains high.
Colds and allergies are frequently confused, and now it’s hard to tell the difference between these illnesses and COVID-19.

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Trailer maintenance

Trailer maintenance keeps it rolling

While a friend was trailering his boat to a boatyard, the trailer collapsed from a broken axle, damaging the boat as well as the trailer. Looking closely at pictures, I could tell that the trailer had been poorly maintained.

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Woman to Woman

How to tell if you’re on a collision course

By Capt. Katherine Redmond

How can you tell if you are on a collision course with another vessel?

Let’s suppose you’re taking a little cruise on your local waters, and you see a boat off your starboard side, about 1,000 feet away. It’s angled slightly in your direction, but you cannot tell if there’s any eventual danger of collision.Read More

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Tips for older boaters

By Gino Mottino, M.D.

With the average age of Americans advancing and the cost of boats increasing, most new engine-powered boats are bought by older boaters. Regardless of age, a skipper must be responsible for the safety of the boat and everyone onboard.

As an operator, you must be aware of your abilities, limitations, and health, including sight, hearing, mobility, stamina and mental acuity. You must also keep in mind the abilities and limitations of your crew: As we get older, so do all our family and friends.

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Woman to Woman

Make anchoring out a pleasure

By Capt. Katherine Redmond

In my opinion, anchoring out is one of the greatest pleasures of boating. Whether relaxing near the beach, rafting up with friends, or hiding out in one of the little coves that can only be reached by water, anchoring out is awesome.

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Boating and COVID-19

By Gino Bottino, MD

As a member of the US Sailing Sports Medical committee, I have been working on plans to reopen sailing centers for sail training and Olympic sailing, as well as big boat sailing, amid the pandemic. Here are a few recommendations that can be made applicable to recreational boaters as well:

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isopropyl alcohol could prevent water-contaminated fuel

Isopropyl alcohol could prevent water-contaminated fuel

By Dave Osmolski

With the coronavirus pandemic squarely upon us this spring, boating was curtailed during the worst possible season. With marinas and public and private boat launch ramps closed, many boats languished in boatyards and driveways.

I wonder how many boat owners, like me, were faced with water in our gasoline fuel tanks. Water collects due to condensation and ethanol additives absorbing water from the atmosphere, which has been going through periods of heating and cooling.

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Woman to Woman

How to avoid trouble when docking

By Capt. Katherine Redmond

Try, try again

If you start the docking process wrong, begin again. Many boaters feel embarrassed to back off an improperly aligned docking attempt, so they stay with it, vrooming forward, shrieking into reverse, banging into this, dinging that, haplessly attempting to correct the uncorrectable.

It’s much easier—and more professional—to abort the ill-fated maneuver and start over.

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Stay safe from ticks and tick-borne illnesses

By Gino Bottino, M.D.

Unique among arachnids, ticks suck blood to survive. Some are as small as a sesame seed. Like tiny vampires, they latch onto mammals, birds, reptiles, and amphibians. There are soft ticks and hard ticks. A hard tick has a hard plate on its back and is more likely to bite and feed on people and animals, transmitting dangerous diseases. Hard ticks thrive in wooded areas, tall grass, and trees and shrubs. Some, such as dog ticks, make their way indoors on humans or canines.

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