With over 100,000 lakes and rivers to enjoy and explore, Saskatchewan offers up ample opportunities to get out on the water. Whether is it sailing, fishing, water sports or simply cruising, there are a number of things to keep in mind in order to protect yourself, your watercraft and the people around you this summer.
Before setting sail this season, make sure to:
- Perform pre-season maintenance on your vessel,
- Create an inventory your belongings in case they are stolen or destroyed,
- Consider storing high-value items in safety deposit boxes or at home, Renew your license and registration for the trailer used to transport the boat or watercraft,
- and Ensure you have your Pleasure Craft Operator Card.
You will also want to make sure you are properly insured. While boat insurance is not legally required in Saskatchewan, it is highly recommended. Motorboats, sailboats and recreational watercrafts such as Sea-Doos and Jet Skis are valuable pieces of property and are subject to variety of risks. The unfortunate reality is that watercraft damage and accidents can and do occur.
Consider boat insurance as an investment and liability protection that allows you to be prepared for unpredictable events. Strong storms are not uncommon in Saskatchewan and are often a source of watercraft damage. Underwater objects such as rocks or free-floating items could be hit. If your boat is damaged while docked at a marina, the cost of repair will be your responsibility. You could be the unfortunate victim of boat vandalism or theft. Or if you are in a boating accident where someone is hurt, the legal and medical costs could be very high. Without the proper coverage, you will be responsible for all damages and fees whether you were operating the watercraft or not.
Don’t assume that your home insurance will automatically cover a boat or watercraft. This coverage needs to be specified on your policy. Depending on the size, type and value of your boat, it may make more sense to have a separate marine insurance policy.
There are a number of different insurance options for different types of watercrafts. Typically boats and recreational watercrafts should be insured to their replacement value. Depending on the insurer and the coverage selected*, boat insurance can cover a range of risks:
- Damage caused by natural disasters
- Damage caused in or out of the water
- Theft Personal property that is on the boat
- Liability insurance – to protect you if someone gets injured while on the boat
- Towing assistance – to help if you get stranded on the water
- Loss of use – option of a temporary replacement while your boat is being repaired
- Coverage for trailers or sailboat cradle
- Broad navigation limits
In order to further mitigate your risks on the water – and to save a few bucks – consider taking a Transport Canada approved boating safety course. You may be eligible for some money-saving discounts if you are claims-free, have boat training or have operator’s experience.
Boat insurance will give you peace of mind to know that you are property covered in case of an accident or an emergency. Make sure you are protecting your water-faring investments this summer and that your time on the water is worry-free.
Talk to the professionals Farrell Agencies about boat insurance options today. Their experts understand boats and will be able to offer you a range of coverages that let you customize the level of protection that’s appropriate for you and your watercraft.
*Certain conditions, limitations, restrictions and exclusions apply. Availability of coverage varies by province and is subject to rules and eligibility. Speak to your broker for specific information.