Why Sailboats Sink And Five Tips To Prevent ItBoatU.S. Opens Its Insurance Claims Files
ALEXANDRIA, Va. — A study of 100 sailboat sinkings from the BoatU.S. Insurance claims files could help prevent your sailboat from becoming a statistic. “The sinkings were found to be divided evenly into two broad categories – those that sank at the dock and those that sank while underway,” said BoatU.S. Marine Insurance Technical Director Bob Adriance.
“However, when it came to sinking underway, a sailboat’s deep draft became the obvious factor,” Adriance continued. Striking a submerged object was found to cause 40 percent of the sinkings while underway.
Next on the underway list was a broken prop shaft or strut (16 percent) and damaged or deteriorated fittings below the waterline (16 percent). “Prop shaft corrosion seems to be a bigger issue with sailboats than with powerboats as auxiliary sailboat engines are not run as often, allowing corrosion to set in,” added Adriance.
The most common cause of dockside sinkings were found to be the result of deteriorated or damaged or corroded fittings such as intakes, seacocks, and drains below the waterline. Stuffing box leaks were number two on the dockside list.
The complete study results are as follows:
Sinking At The Dock
Below waterline fitting: 44 percent
Struck submerged object: 40 percent
Five Tips To Prevent A Sailboat’s Sinking: