Members are welcome to sail independently from the club, but advice and support boats are only available during club organised sailing activities. Members are responsible for their own safety at all times. In the case of children and youths, parents or guardians are expected to exercise appropriate supervision.
The following suggestions are for guidance only:
Prior to Launch
• Arrange to go out with another similar boat and watch out for each other.
• Check the weather forecast ideally from at least two sources including the Met Office Inshore Waters forecast and XC weather or similar. Check the current and recent wind at the pier head weather station (link on LSC website).
• Check times and heights of tide.
• Check your boat's buoyancy, equipment, rigging and fixings.
• Tell a reliable person ashore where you are going and give them your mobile telephone number(s).
• Carry a mobile phone in a plastic bag or waterproof container.
• Realistically assess yourself, your crew and your boat's ability to cope.
• Ask experienced sailing people for a second opinion if possible.
• Dress warmly for the conditions it is easier to take off a layer than put it on.
• Wear personal buoyancy, properly done up, at all times afloat.
• Carry a compass and a waterproof watch. Practice sailing a compass course so you can cope with poor visibility.
• Carry a paddle to allow you to return to shore in the case of rig failure or the wind dying.
• Arrange a time for your shore mate either to contact you or to raise the alarm.
• Sail within your 'comfort zone' both in terms of the conditions you sail in and the distance from the club you decide to go. Don't take risks.
• Watch the sky upwind for black clouds, fog, rain or wind direction changes.
• Avoid sailing to the east of your starting point in a dying wind on an ebb tide.
• Go ashore if you have doubts or get cold or tired there's always another day.
• If you capsize and can't right it, stay with the boat. Never try to swim to shore.
• Watch all around for shipping, other boats and obstacles.
• Don't stay out alone after your sailing partner comes in.
• Always return to shore before dusk.
On Coming Ashore
• Tell your shore mate to stand down when you come ashore.
(above adapted from Brightlingsea SC document)
Additional Guidance during COVID-19 Pandemic
• Check the club website for any updates and the latest risk assessments.
• Members should be aware that the support boat will not be operating and therefore will not be able to provide assistance.
• Craft that cannot meet social distancing due to their size should not be used unless other persons on-board are from the same household.
• The clubhouse is closed and therefore changing facilities (including showers and toilets) are unable to be used. Members should make suitable arrangements to facilitate their activities.
• Sanitise hands before and after using the Promenade, birdcage and rack padlock / handles or use disposable gloves.
• The gates must be kept locked, after use, to keep out members of the public.
• Walk slowly and carefully around the racks ensuring social distancing is maintained (2m).
• Report any damage to the racks to the LSC committee.
• Do not touch other boats and equipment unnecessarily.
• Ensure there is sufficient room to prepare and rig the boat and if necessary, move the boat to a different position to maintain social distancing.
• Discuss with other members the order of launching, if congested, to allow social distancing.
• Members are expected to launch and recover their boats single handed to maintain social distancing. Assistance can be provided with the owner’s permission, provided social distancing is maintained. Long painters could be utilised to maintain social distancing.
• If other members have provided assistance and touched the boat, it is recommended the owner takes appropriate measures to clean and sanitise areas that have been touched or leave for 72 hours