Sailing in Storms: How to Prepare Your Yacht for a Storm - Yachting Monthly (2023)

Sailing offshore in heavy weather is one thing, but what should inshore sailors do when a heavy blow is imminent? Martin Thomas explains it and Theo Stocker tests it

From pitchpolings in the Southern Ocean to hurricanes in the North Atlantic, much has been written about the means and methods of sailing in open water severe weather.

The Customs column is usually dedicated to those who have nowhere to hide but plenty of sea space to play with. As coastal sailors we have the luxury of avoiding the worst, but still sail long enough to eventually get caught.

Proximity to shelters is a relative blessing at the moment - we won't have to endure the mistreatment for long - but the presence of land is also a danger as it limits sea space and therefore opportunities. So knowing how to prepare and how to handle your boat if you get caught can mean the difference between a funny anecdote later at the bar or a call to the lifeboat.

We thought it wise to use the combined knowledge of the experienced sailors who contributed to the latest edition of Adland Coles' Bible on severe weather sailing to find out what to do during coastal storms and then try it out and see what works in practice. Editor Theo Stocker volunteered
This enviable task, which he stresses was actually a lot of fun, and after watching the weather forecast all winter, he managed to line up yachts, RIBs, crew and photographers in force 8 winds to to get out at the rough work.

For this, Theo wanted a robust yacht that could easily withstand extreme weather conditions. And for that, you need look little further than the ever-trustworthy Contessa 32. Once owned by Willy Ker, Assent is now owned by the Rogers family and is formerly owned by, among others, Kit Rogers, the second-generation builder of Contessa 32. driven other things, at Jeremy Rogers Ltd in Lymington.

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Consent in relatively milder cases. Photo: Nick Compton


The best way to deal with severe weather is to avoid it. Forecasts are so accurate these days that inshore sailors are rarely caught unless they wait for worse weather. Beth Leonard, author of "Blue Horizons," who has circumnavigated the world twice, estimates that she has had little or insufficient wind for about 70% of her time at sea. Similarly, long-distance sailors Lin and Larry Pardey reported encountering gusty winds or worse winds 3% of the time.

On the other hand, storms are becoming more frequent and violent, and for most of us, one storm is enough.

In 2022, Hurricane Ian hit the east coast of the United States with more energy and stronger winds than ever before. That same year, Storm Eunice produced record winds of 106 knots (122 miles per hour) at The Needles on the Isle of Wight. In Chichester Harbour, normally a safe haven for boats, winds reached 70 knots. It seems that if they sail sufficiently, even cautious cruise lines will inevitably encounter rough conditions and need to come up with a plan.

Sailing in Storms: How to Prepare Your Yacht for a Storm - Yachting Monthly (2)

You can never have enough anchor points to clip on to. Photo: Richard Langdon

Sailing in heavy weather - can the boat handle it?

The modern cruising yacht is remarkably seaworthy, however there are some modifications and improvements for the discerning skipper to consider. The entire boat should be viewed with severe weather in mind. For example, the cabin lock must be operable from both the inside and the outside so that you can lock yourself below.

Lee cloths must be able to support the weight of one person. A bilge alarm can be fitted in case of water ingress. Deck equipment should have stowage below so it can be removed from the exposed deck and safely stowed in inclement weather. The list goes on.

(Video) How to prepare a yacht for heavy weather – Skip Novak's Storm Sailing

Before setting off on your boat, spend a quiet hour with a notepad and imagine the boat upside down. what moves A tool box, cooler lids, cabin soleplates, contents of lockers, including under bed storage, may shift or fly around in the cabin. All lockers must have effective latches for storing this equipment. Don't forget to check that the batteries are properly installed in the boat.

A detachable inner forestay is desirable in strong winds. A well-formed foresail, which is not possible with a reefed headsail, is essential for going upwind, which can be vital if the boat gets stuck on the leeward side. Making a small headsail with a way to upgrade it with the right downhaul tension makes a world of difference when the need arises.

Sailing in Storms: How to Prepare Your Yacht for a Storm - Yachting Monthly (3)

Piston rods are prone to corrosion and therefore need to be flushed and lubricated. Photo: Richard Langdon

Boaters should also assess the location and safety of their liferaft. The Coach Roof is a popular spot, but not always safe, and rafts have been lost here. Inception's life raft, a Beneteau 50, was apparently firmly attached to the roof of the bus. In rough weather at night, a green wave swept over the boat and swept it away, causing it to go overboard. When the boat later began to sink, the crew found themselves in the sea in the dark without a life raft. Luckily, they were rescued by a nearby yacht.

A sheltered space behind the cockpit for the liferaft is a suitable location. Some opt for a cockpit locker or the hospitals. Whatever location is chosen, the crew must be able to deploy the raft quickly and safely (within 15 seconds is the recommendation).

Crews moving from the cockpit at night or in inclement weather must wear a chain, preferably a double chain with short and long slings. Pay attention to the support struts to which the chain is attached. Wire reinforcements can be rolled underfoot, flat non-stretch webbing reinforcements are preferred. Fabric and seams can deteriorate over time from exposure to UV rays. It's best to remove them during the winter and replace them from time to time, especially if you're not sure how old they are.

When crew members fall overboard on their chain, they can be swept through the water, an uncomfortable and sometimes fatal experience. If the brace can be positioned to prevent someone from falling over the edge, it will be safer. To achieve this and keep the crew on board, some boaters run the struts on either side of the cabin roof with a single centerline on the foredeck.

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Touchscreen technology and water don't mix when it's so wet on deck. Photo: Richard Langdon

Every boat must have at least one way of getting an accident back on board, including a way to secure and lift an incapacitated crew member out of the water on deck. Performing such a recovery is not an easy task and actually trying the proposed method is a sobering experience, even in a safe environment. Each crew member must be familiar with the system.

Real world experience

Hoist work

an Deck,approvalwas fitted with a detachable inner forestay for the storm jib, which was attached to the masthead about a foot below the forestay - close enough that no additional mast support was required. The butt end is permanently rigged and features a detachable Highfield grip with lowered nose pins. When this is removed, the forestay is secured
the chain plates with a simple purchase. She also has a trysail which was never used out of annoyance, partly because the original trysail track, separate from the mainsail track, was removed making things much more difficult.

Sailing in Storms: How to Prepare Your Yacht for a Storm - Yachting Monthly (5)

Running upwind in short, steep seas in the Needles Channel. Photo: Richard Langdon

(Video) How to Prepare Your Yacht for a Tropical Storm


Assent was well equipped with strap bucks along both side decks, points to attach to the mast and three anchor points for our straps in the cockpit, two aft for the rudder depending on which side they were on and one forward for the crew. However, since there were three of us on deck and moving around a lot, we could have used a second anchor point D-ring on the front of the cockpit, which Kit now wants to attach.

The elastic straps gave us a more flexible range of motion but would also have given us more room to fall overboard. I was glad I had a short loop double chain.

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Modern carabiners are less prone to snagging on harness supports. Photo: Richard Langdon

Two of ours used modern style carabiners that didn't catch on the Jackstay webbing. The older carabiner with a notch on the end consistently clamped the fabric and made it significantly more difficult to move.

You can never have enough anchor points to clip on to. fits more. Modern retaining clips make movement on deck much easier.


Being on deck was an extremely wet experience. Even when you're sheltered, there's a lot of water in the air that gets everywhere. YourchartplotterA phone or iPad case may be waterproof, but once your fingers get wet and water gets on the screen, the touchscreen technology stops working.

When we tried to use the chart plotter, unexpected things happened, mistaking flying water for finger taps. You need physical buttons. I also found that I could only use my phone via the side button to launch Siri voice control.

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Whatever happens, it's going to get wet on deck. Photo: Richard Langdon

If this had been our main navigation or help we would have been stuck. A waterproof notebook with a pilot plan for identifying and avoiding hazards would have been more effective.


The boat's fixed VHF radio was located under the chart table and had no speaker on deck. We had long since closed washboard and hatch. We couldn't hear or broadcast anything.

Luckily we had twoportable VHF radiosOn deck, both were watertight, but one of them had an inexplicable failure and stopped working, leaving us to rely on our only remaining radio.

For effective and reliable communication it pays to have a speaker and microphone on deck or ideally a command microphone on deck for your fixed VHF radio. You should also bring a few spare VHF handheld radios.

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The storm boom can be pre-assembled and lashed to deck until needed. Photo: Richard Langdon

(Video) How to heave to in a yacht – Skip Novak's Storm Sailing

preparation at sea

If it is clear that the storm will hit the boat before shelter can be reached, prepare the ship and crew for the attack. Reef early, switch to balaclava in time and take refuge. Hand out seasickness pills and pay attention to the guard system. Set up the sail plan for severe weather and deploy the inner forestay with a storm jib. It is advisable to surrender the mainsail, secure the boom and run on headsails.

Reduce the wind by furling the headsails tightly and wrapping them with a spare halyard, then fold and tie down the sprayhood and bimini and remove all winches from the cockpit. Deflate the dinghy and go down. Remove a davited sloop or fill with fenders and cover with a sturdy tarpaulin.

Check the security of heavy weights such as batteries, anchors and tool boxes and use additional lashings if necessary. Stow loose items below, especially in the galley. Make sure the lockers are properly closed.

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Check that the liferaft is properly secured, including pelican hooks or hydrostatic release, but that it can be launched easily. Photo: Richard Langdon

Large bank angles may require closing heads and seacocks to prevent flooding.

Of course, windows and hatches, but also the lids of the cockpit cases, must be firmly closed - make sure that the fasteners inside cannot accidentally spring open. Washboards must be secured so that they cannot fall out. Attach mounting screws or a line to the back of each washboard to hold it in place before setting up the tarp.

Reinforce your crew

Check that the liferaft is properly secured but not latched and free to float. If you don't already have one, prepare a grab bag.

As for the crew, they should get a hot meal before the worst happens. Then prepare soup and coffee in thermoses, prepare sandwiches and put them in a waterproof container. Life jackets and harnesses must be worn at all times, including when at rest.

Sailing in Storms: How to Prepare Your Yacht for a Storm - Yachting Monthly (10)

Recharge your batteries with snacks and hot drinks. Being on deck is exhausting. Photo: Richard Langdon

These comments are aimed at the coastal sailor to which most of us belong; those sailors who accidentally got caught in heavy weather but can reach the refuge in a day
or two or even just a few hours.

How about a hitch?

Sailors crossing oceans that may be far from a haven require further preparation. In particular, your boat must have some form of towing device or tug onboard, which can sometimes be life-saving in mid-ocean or high latitude conditions. Coastal cruisers typically do not require such devices.

(Video) What to do in a STORM at Sea | Sailing Wisdom

The towing device prevents the ship from going too fast around the front of a wave and burying the bow in the wave ahead, causing pitch poling and damage as was the case with Susie GoodallGolden Globe Racein 2018 and Kevin Escoffier in 2022Vendee-Globus. It seems clear that in the ultimate storm of survival, the best of these towed gears is the Jordan Series Drogue (JSD), which is specifically tuned for the size of the boat.

A JSD has been used successfully on many occasions by famous sailors such as Roger TaylorMany, Trevor Robertson in Iron Bark, Susanne Huber-Curphey in Nehaj and others. Never has a yacht capsized while lying to a JSD. Coastal cruisers don't need to carry such towing gear, however - don't forget the thousands of yachts that have traveled millions of miles without owning one.

Sailing in Storms: How to Prepare Your Yacht for a Storm - Yachting Monthly (11)

Life is easier when two crew members can move forward together and let one other take the helm. Photo: Richard Langdon

Real world experience

to nail down

Below deck all the lockers were well secured although the under bed box lids were open and the cutlery drawer in the galley was an open box - the sharp blades made me a little nervous!

Inside the cabin were roomy pockets of knives, radios, flares, and flares right where you wanted them. The VHF radio was permanently installed at the chart table and there were no speakers or microphone on deck.

We were very impressed with how well the boat was moored below. It was clear we hadn't been knocked down, but at the end of a very busy day, a screwdriver and winch handle were out of place below. Most of the water that flowed down was from us sinking in sodden oils, or the hatch was ajar.

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A sprayhood makes a world of difference in protecting crew from the elements, especially on the windward side, as long as it doesn't get too much wind. Photo: Richard Langdon

deck work

As the waves built, Kit leaned over the stern to insert a wooden plug into the diesel heater exhaust to prevent subsequent waves from gobbling it up.

We had connected the inner forestay in port but still had work to do on the storm jib and later on the trysail. Both were easier with two people on deck, so we were very happy to have Stu, a very experienced sailor, at the helm.

For all deck work we found that either running upwind or turning into the wind was far better than scurrying around on a pitcher.
and sloping deck.

pipe hood

At first we buckled the hood, but the metal parts blocked the folding claws of the body roof, and longing for a little protection we put them back on. Even in more than 40 knots of wind, it remained rock solid. We didn't have green water over the deck and that would have done damage so I would judge this choice on sea conditions rather than wind force.

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How do you prepare a sailing ship for a storm? ›

Essential storm tactics

Strip off all canvas to reduce windage. This means biminis, dodgers, awnings, mainsails, roller-furled jibs – anything made of fabric. It's amazing how many people think they've done their prep work simply by folding down their bimini or taking a few wraps of line around a furled sail.

How do you sail a yacht in a storm? ›

Avoid sailing on a reach across tall breaking waves; they can roll a boat over. When sailing close-hauled in waves, aim toward flat spots while keeping speed up so you can steer. To reduce the chance of a wave washing across the deck, tack in relatively smooth water.

What do you do in a sailboat during a storm? ›

What should be done when sailing through a storm. The classic strategy is to sail away from a storm's path, which is usually always to its right side as it gets closer to you. In general, you want to point one of your boat's ends toward the waves. Specifically, you want to actively run with the stern toward the waves.

Can a yacht survive rough seas? ›

Bottom Line. Yachts can withstand severe weather conditions such as tropical storms and hurricanes. However, you should not test your luck by venturing out on the water during these incidents. Whenever feasible, it is always ideal to avoid any harsh weather in order to keep you, your yacht, and your crew safe from it.

How do ships not tip over in storms? ›

In case of an emergency or rough seas, it helps to keep the ship balanced, counter the waves and reduce rocking. A large cruise ship usually has several ballast tanks. So the combined effect of a ship's buoyancy, low center of gravity, and ballast keep the ship from tipping over.

What do sailors do during storms? ›

Sailing in Storms

You should instead sail toward the flat spots while maintaining a high speed to steer out of the huge waves. You should also target smooth waters if any to prevent the waves from washing across the deck.

What are the strategies for heavy weather sailing? ›

Depowering techniques include flattening sails, increasing twist, and reducing angle of attack; these are the first steps in dealing with increasing winds. When these methods are not sufficient, stronger measures are called for. The waves that accompany strong winds can be as big a problem as the wind itself.

What is the best wind for yacht? ›

Ideally, to sail in absolute comfort, you'd head out on a sunny, warm, breezy day. The weather is dry, the wind anywhere between 5 and 15 knots, and there's no swell or current. As a rule of thumb, this makes for the best sailing conditions, on most boats.

Do you lower sails in a storm? ›

Reduce sail as needed and in the true storm-force wind you can continue sailing downwind "under bare poles" with no sail at all. As the wind increases, the greatest danger is going too fast, even without the sail, in which case the boat may come down a large wave and bury the bow in the back of the wave in front.

What sail to use in a storm? ›

Storm sails are durable and compact sails designed for use in rough weather. They're smaller than regular mainsails and headsails. The most common kinds of storm sails are the trysail and the storm jib. Storm sails can be deployed alone or in pairs.

What do sailors call a storm? ›

According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) hurricanes (the term most U.S. sailors are familiar with) and typhoons are just two different names for the same weather phenomenon: tropical cyclones, i.e., “a rotating, organized system of clouds and thunderstorms that originates over tropical or ...

What is the safest yacht in the world? ›

The Kraken 50, billed as the 'safest blue water yacht in build today,' has been launched. Unlike all her contemporaries, the K50 has the unique 'Zero Keel' construction: An all-in-one hull and keel with scantlings to match.

Can a storm sink a yacht? ›

Heavy rain can cause serious damage to boats in a number of ways. The most obvious way is by sinking the boat. The weight of the water can overwhelm the boat, causing it to take on water and eventually sink. This is more likely to happen with smaller boats, but even large boats can be at risk in extreme conditions.

What is the most seaworthy yacht? ›

A vessel built to superyacht standards and beyond, the Dutch Built 50 outrivals its competitors with its superior quality and supreme seaworthiness. As founder Bas Lengers highlights: “I can say with complete confidence that the Stratos Dutch Built 50 is the most seaworthy vessel in its class.”

Why do yachts not tip over? ›

The keel helps stop boats rolling (moving from side to side) or capsizing, because it means more force is required to push the boat sideways through the water or rotate it.

How do sailors protect their ship during a heavy storm? ›

During a heavy storm, sailors pour soap powder or oil into the sea near their ship to decrease the surface tension of sea water. This process reduces the impact of the violent water current against the wall of ship.

How big of a wave would it take to capsize a cruise ship? ›

According to Harry Bolton, retired captain of the training ship Golden Bear at the California Maritime Academy, a modern cruise ship could hypothetically be capsized by a 70 to 100-foot wave if it took it directly on the beam.

How did pirates sail through storms? ›

Some ships did carry storm sails which were more durable and less likely to shred, but these could take full day to put on. Most often they weren't on board, or there wasn't enough time to put them up before they hit the hurricane, however, and so the safest option was to furl the sails.

Can you drop anchor in the middle of the ocean? ›

Can you drop anchor in the middle of the ocean? The answer to that is 'no'. Anchoring in the middle of the ocean is not possible due to the depth. In order to maintain good holding, you want at least 7 times more line out than there is water underneath your boat.

Do ships drop anchor in a storm? ›

If the storm rises when the ship is in a harbor, an anchor is dropped from the bow (front) to secure it to solid ground below. The anchor keeps the bow pointed into the wind as the ship safely pivots around it, preventing the ship from capsizing.

What is the most efficient sailing angle? ›

Thus some efficiency of the shape is lost in creating the shape itself and so sails can't fly as close to the wind as a wing. About the best angle off the wind that most sailboats can achieve is 30 degrees. Any less than this and the wing shape of the sail begins to deflate.

Why is sailing so exhausting? ›

On-the-water environmental stressors

Engine noise and vibration provide additional environmental stressors, as does the boat's constant motion. Collectively, these stressors lead to boater's fatigue: a sudden tiredness coupled with impaired judgement, reaction time and balance.

How do you control a boat in a storm? ›

Try to steer your vessel for the area of the sea with the shallowest waves and lowest winds, the side counterclockwise from the storm's leading edge. Make sure that you have sea room to avoid colliding with other vessels and you're far away from land so you don't crash into it.

What size yacht is best for ocean? ›

For what it's worth, most long-term ocean cruising sailors tend to find that their own sweet spot is somewhere between 11m (36ft) and 14m (46ft) long, while 9-12m (32-40ft) seems to suit many solo sailors, but the right size of boat is intensely personal and the increasing reliability and efficiency of powered sail- ...

What is a good range for a yacht? ›

The general rule is the bigger the vessel, the larger the fuel tank. For instance, a 75-foot motorized vessel that can carry 11,000 litres of fuel can travel about 1500 nautical miles, depending on conditions, whereas a 35-45 foot motorized yacht with a 100-litre tank can travel about 400 nautical miles.

Is 20 mph wind too strong for sailing? ›

For example, if you are sailing, a brisk 20-knot wind may work great if you want to drive a 50-foot sailboat across the ocean. However, that same 20 miles per hour wind may knock a smaller sailboat down, tossing its crew into the water, making for a dangerous situation, even in calm conditions.

Where should you drop anchor in a storm? ›

Be aware of the wind directions, and always anchor by dropping your primary anchor off the bow of the boat, and facing into the wind. Although wind directions can change and re-anchoring might be necessary, it isn't usually needed unless the wind changes directions close to 180 degrees.

What happens if you sail too close to the wind? ›

If you sail very, very close to the wind, you'll lose speed but gain ground. If you fall off from the target direction, you'll gain speed but lose ground. Depending on what your priority is you can adjust your sails to meet speed or course preferences.

How often should you change your sails? ›

After 2,000 hours, these sails are typically considered worn out. The typical season for many cruising families might be 5 hours per day for 30 days a year – for a total of 150 hours. That means an average cruising sailor may expect about 10 years of use from a premium polyester cruising sail.

Where do you anchor a boat during a storm? ›

If you cannot get your boat on land, the next best location is a “hurricane hole”, i.e. a canal, river, or other small waterway, preferably that is well away from open water, has tall banks, has sturdy trees, and few homes. Tie many lines from your boat to shore, keeping your boat in the center of the waterway.

What is the difference between a jib and a storm jib? ›

A storm jib is the smallest jib carried on board and is often separate to the normal sail inventory although some boats will choose to have a number 4 jib which meets the requirements of a storm jib. A storm jib should be hoisted on a suitable headstay, ideally aft of the primary forestay.

How do sailors say goodbye? ›

Fair Winds and Following Seas” is a gesture of good luck to those we will miss and sailors who have served with honor and courage.

How do you greet a sailor? ›

'Ahoy' originated in the seafaring world, where it was used as an interjection to catch the attention of crew members and as a general greeting.

What do you say when a sailor passes? ›

U.S. Navy on Twitter: "Fair winds and following seas, shipmate.

How do you dock a boat when the wind is pushing you away? ›

Approach the dock slowly at a sharp angle (about 40 degrees). Use reverse to stop when close to the dock. Secure the bow line. Put the boat in forward gear briefly, and slowly turn the steering wheel hard away from the dock—this will swing in the stern.

Why do sailboats lean to one side? ›

Sailboats lean when waves and wind affect the boat which cause weight and buoyancy to shift. The equilibrium is messed with and causes these changes to occur. In order to balance this out the boat will need to lean in the opposite direction of the wind or waves.

What is the most expensive yacht to maintain? ›

Superyacht Azzam, which measures 180 meters, is likely to cost its owners around $60 million per year to run.

What boat is least likely to capsize? ›

Larger boats are less prone to capsize than smaller boats. A dismasted sailboat is more likely to capsize than a boat carrying her full rig. A boat has an inherent stability range, ie. an angle of heel past which it will capsize.

Why don t ships sail through the Red Sea? ›

There are three major challenges to transiting the Red Sea area: the Somali pirates, the adverse winds in the northern Red Sea, and the regional politics.

Can yachts handle rough seas? ›

From Hong Kong to Seattle and Melbourne to Tokyo, most superyachts can sail the seas with relative ease. This is attributed to the strength of the engines and the capability of the vessel to handle potentially rough sea conditions.

What do yacht owners do during a hurricane? ›

There are actually two strategies used by companies when preparing for a storm: either leaving the yacht in water with securing devices, or relocating the boat on land. Securing a boat in water involves linking together many ships in a snug harbor.

Why do most yachts sink? ›

Vessels can sink due to a few main reasons- wind and other forces forcing the ship to lean at dangerous angles to the port or starboard sides, waves on the deck adding weight to the vessel and forcing it lower into the water, or waves crashing into the side of the vessel and causing flooding.

What is the most efficient yacht hull? ›

Based on independent testing, the SRD hull, with a single engine or twin engines, is the most fuel efficient powerboat on the market at speeds over 10 knots/12 mph.

Can a 70 foot yacht cross the Atlantic? ›

Yes, it is very feasible for yachts to sail long distances and travel across the Atlantic or Pacific oceans.

What is the most common yacht size? ›

Most motor yachts on the market are typically 24 meters (78 feet) or less. There are only a handful of megayachts in the world due to their extravagant price tag.

How do you secure a sailboat for a hurricane? ›

On dry land, for small, lightweight boats, it's best to trailer the vessel as far inland as possible. Tie the boat to the trailer securely, place blocks around the wheels and deflate the tires to prevent the trailer from rolling. For bigger boats, tie the vessel to its storage cradle with several heavy lines.

How do sailor protect their ship during a heavy storm? ›

During a heavy storm, sailors pour soap powder or oil into the sea near their ship to decrease the surface tension of sea water. This process reduces the impact of the violent water current against the wall of ship.

How did pirates prepare for storms? ›

The trick was to keep the ship on the move, and to keep it moving into the waves while avoiding putting too much strain on the sails and masts. The ship needed to keep up speed to move up the oncoming waves, and also to keep its rudder in the water so that it could steer.

What do yachts do during hurricanes? ›

Typically, boats are then brought well above the anticipated storm surge area, put into a safe area with reliable equipment and stored on specially designed storage racks.

Where do yachts go during hurricane season? ›

Sailing during hurricane season is safer in northern latitudes and inland areas, such as the Great Lakes and the Pacific Coast.

How do you prepare a yacht for a hurricane? ›

Remove all moveable equipment: canvas, sails, dinghies, radios, biminis, roller furling sails. Lash down everything you cannot remove: tillers, wheels, booms. Make sure electrical system is turned off unless you plan to leave the boat in the water. Remove battery and portable fuel.

How did sailors survive storms? ›

Keep moving with the hurricane

The trick to survival, however was to keep the ship moving into the waves whilst not placing too much strain on the sails and masts. The ship needed to keep enough speed to move up the sides of oncoming waves whilst keeping its rudder in the water to enable steering.

How did pirates go to the bathroom on ships? ›

How did Pirates relieve themselves? In most ships there would be a place at the bow ( front end ) of the ship called the head. This was a hole in the floor to squat over. Faeces would fall directly into the sea below.

How did sailors go to the bathroom? ›

The ship's toilet was typically placed at the head of the ship near the base of the bowsprit, where splashing water served to naturally clean the toilet area.

What did pirates drink while at sea? ›

Rum, which was distilled from sugar, became a primary export. As a result, many of the ships on the waters that pirates attacked were filled with it. Crews tended to drink much of the liquid loot they found. However, rum was also used as a currency and often traded for goods.

How do yachts survive storms? ›

The Boat's Top Speed Is Important

The best way for a yacht to survive a hurricane is to move away from it before it hits. A hurricane can travel at speeds of up to 10 to 35 miles an hour. This is between 8 and 30 knots. As long as your yacht can travel at this speed, you should be able to outrun it.

Can a ship stay in the eye of a storm? ›

The eye of a hurricane is a relatively calm, circular area at the center of the storm with little to no wind or rain. While it may seem like a safe haven, staying within the eye can actually be quite dangerous.

How safe are ships in storms? ›

Today's modern cruise ships are built to withstand storms, avoid them, and even outrun them. Cruise companies follow the weather very carefully, changing itineraries, canceling sailings, and working hard to keep passengers and crew out of harm's way.


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Author: Catherine Tremblay

Last Updated: 10/20/2023

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Name: Catherine Tremblay

Birthday: 1999-09-23

Address: Suite 461 73643 Sherril Loaf, Dickinsonland, AZ 47941-2379

Phone: +2678139151039

Job: International Administration Supervisor

Hobby: Dowsing, Snowboarding, Rowing, Beekeeping, Calligraphy, Shooting, Air sports

Introduction: My name is Catherine Tremblay, I am a precious, perfect, tasty, enthusiastic, inexpensive, vast, kind person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.