Planning and Preparation – Pleasure Craft trip

  • Check your oil & fuel supply for the planned trip (Fuel rule of thirds = 1/3 to go, 1/3 to return, 1/3 reserve)
  • Know who you can contact in an emergency/distress and how can you contact them (VHF radio, cell phone, whistle, distress signal)
  • Prepare a sail plan/trip plan with all the necessary details in the event of an emergency and file the plan with a responsible person who know the instructions
  • Make sure that you close out the plan upon return and update your plan if things change along the way
  • Reference your marine charts for local water hazards that may impede the operation of the boat
  • Also, reference your marine charts, Sailing Directions, Cruising Guides, etc for good shelter or anchorage area in the event of foul Check charts tide tables for current/tide information.
  • For pleasure craft that are less that 6m in length, make sure you consult your capacity plate and verify that the boat’s recommended maximum safe load capacity has not been Be careful not to overload the boat
  • If traveling in US waters, make sure you have the latest updates of Homeland Security Requirements
  • Make sure that everyone on board knows where the safety equipment is located and their roles in case of emergency