All posts by Jason Wofford

photo of pontoon boat

Notes About Boaters’ Insurance

The State of Tennessee does not actually require boaters to carry any insurance, however, there is no one who thinks it is wise to leave such a large investment uncovered. And while you may not be required to have coverage, you remain liable should someone become injured or should someone’s property be damaged due to a boating accident.

The Following is A Guest Blog from Augustine Insurance Group:

Augustine Insurance Group offers some information to Tennessee boat owners in this Guest Blog to help insulate you from liability and to help assure that you are able to recover financially should something go awry.

Insurance for Tennessee Boaters:

Tennessee law doesn’t require boaters to carry insurance. However, by getting coverage, you can rest assured that you have financial assistance in case you have to pay for recovery costs arising from a wreck or other accident. Some of the coverage you need is:

Liability Insurance: Coverage insures you against the property damage or injuries you cause to third parties, such as other boaters. It is important to carry this coverage because it will help you repay someone else if you are at-fault for their losses in a wreck.

Physical Damage Insurance: Coverage will help you pay for damage to your own vessel. It will usually include collision insurance, to cover wreck damage, and comprehensive coverage, that pays for other types of damage, such as theft or fires.

Uninsured Boater Insurance: This component of your policy will cover your boat’s damage if someone else hits your boat but does not have liability insurance available to compensate you.

Guest Passenger Liability Coverage: If you decide to hand the keys to a family member or friend, then there’s a chance they might cause an accident. They might not have boat insurance of their own. You can make sure they have they have at-fault coverage under a guest passenger liability policy.

We all head to the lake to have fun. Having insurance means that you are protected for potential financial risks in case of problems.

About Augustine Insurance Group:

For over 40 years, Augustine Insurance Group has provided top-of-the-line, expert-backed insurance policies throughout Tennessee and Kentucky. Our dedicated agents can help you determine the boat insurance that’s right for your vessel, and we’re more than happy to help you maximize your policy’s affordability at the same time.

Connect with us by visiting our website or by calling us at (931) 431-3677 during business hours.

Enjoy the Sun but Protect Your Eyes

The month of July marks UV Protection Month. It is a good time to remember that the ultra violet rays of the sunshine we love can be dangerous if we are not protected. We have all learned a lot about the need to slather everyone with sunscreen to protect skin from sunburns which can lead to skin cancers later in life. Most of us are pretty careful to protect the backs of necks, noses and tops of bare feet. We wear hats to protect from burns, and we are getting good at always protecting children with high SPF sunscreens.

BUT UV Protection Month is actually designated by Ophthalmology! It is a reminder that we need to protect our eyes from harmful ultra violet light. And we need to be especially mindful to protect the eyes of children. According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, sunglasses are more than a fashion statement.

Over time, exposure to UV light without protection can lead to a much higher risk of eye diseases. And these diseases are serious. They include cataracts, macular degeneration and even growths in the eye, including sometimes cancer. Even shorter times outside can cause eye damage – especially from sun that reflects off the water. These injuries are sunburns on the front part of the eye. The injury, called photokeratitis, leads to redness, blurry vision, light sensitivity and sometime, although rarely, temporary vision loss.

In honor of UV Awareness month, the American Academy of Ophthalmology wants everyone to know that you can prevent this eye damage with just a pair of sunglasses that screen for UVA and UVB radiation! It is that simple whether you are an adult or child.

The other really great news is that it is not the price of the glasses that matter or the color of the lenses. It is all a matter of assuring that the glasses screen out 99 to 100 percent of BOTH UVA and UVB rays. Less costly glasses with UVA and UVB protection are just as effective as the most expensive ones with the same 99 to 100 percent protections.

Here is what they recommend:

If you are not certain about whether the lenses are screening 99 to 100 percent of UVA and UVB lenses or you are not sure whether the sticker on the glasses is real, you should stop by an optical shop and ask them to check the sunglasses with their UV meter. Remember, dark lenses do NOT necessarily mean that they are screening UVA and UVB radiation!

Sunglasses should be big! You want to make sure that they are filtering rays that reflect up from water or the ground as well as light coming from above you and the sunshine coming in from the sides. The bigger the lenses the better AND ditching style and getting wraparound glasses is actually the best way to cut down on your exposure.

Buy sunglasses based on what you are doing while you wear them. Amber, green or gray lenses are good for sports like golf or baseball. The colors of those lenses create a higher contrast of light. If you are on the water or driving, look for polarized lenses. These lenses reduce glare. But, again, in all cases the lenses MUST protect you from UVA and UVB rays!

We have a variety of quality sunglasses available at the Marina Store. Come browse our selection.

Bring Sunscreen!

You’ve packed towels, life jackets, bathing suits, fishing gear, food, paper supplies, phone charger, a great summer book, toiletries…. But one of the most important supplies you need to remember is BRING SUNSCREEN! – And, of course, if you run out or forget, you can pick up Sunscreen in the Marina Store.

And there are some important things you need to know to make sure that your fun in the sun at Dale Hollow isn’t changed by too much sunshine. The first is to understand that not all sunscreens are created equal!

There are two types of sunrays, UVA an UVB. Both can be harmful but sunscreens vary in which types of rays they help protect against. UVA are rays are the longer rays that cause skin damage, aging and some cancers. UVB are shorter rays that cause sunburns, skin damage and some cancers.

You want to select a broad spectrum sunscreen that helps with both UVA and UVB protections.

The second issue is SPF. Sunscreens come in various ratings for SPF. Your skin will begin to turn pink/red within 20 minutes of exposure to the sun. Sunscreens that have ratings of at least 15 SPF are supposed to be able to protect you for an additional 15 times. Of course, this assumes that you are not wet or sweaty.

A rating of 15 SPF should block 93% of the UBV light. 30 SPF blocks 97% and 50 SPF blocks 98% of UBV light.

It also takes time for your cells to absorb the sunscreen to provide any protections. You should always plan to apply sunscreen 20 minutes BEFORE you expect to be in the sun. And you should reapply sunscreen every 20 minutes after the first application or after getting wet.

The amount of sunscreen you use should be about 1 oz for each application. That is the equivalent of about a shot glass of sunscreen for each person for each application. Many studies of sunscreen use indicate that most people use only about 25% of the quantity needed to actually protect them.

And make sure that you apply sunscreen to the “forgotten spots”! These include the tops of your feet, back of your neck, behind your ears and along the part in your scalp.

A word about babies. Under 6 months old, babies sensitive skin can react badly to both the chemicals of sunscreen AND the sun exposure.


How to Become a Boat Safety A-fish-ionado

by Shannon Ireland

There are few greater feelings than the wind blowing your hair, the sun kissing your skin and the spray of the water raining down as you listen to the engine propel you along the lake or ocean. In this moment, you’re carefree. But before you leave the dock in search of this feeling, be sure to take precautions.

According to the United States Coast Guard (USCG), there were 2,613 injuries and 626 deaths reported as a result of recreational boating accidents in 2015. Here are some tips to help prevent you from becoming a statistic.

Follow the Law… Oar Else

Laws vary from state to state, so educate yourself on your state’s requirements before taking your boat for a spin.

Across the board, laws require that boats have USCG-approved life vests for all passengers. Your boat must also be registered, and anyone driving must carry a boating license. Operator inexperience led to 458 accidents, 288 injuries and 37 deaths in 2015, per the USCG.

Operating a vessel under the influence of alcohol is against the law, so make sure to establish a designated driver before setting sail for a day on the water.

Use Good Judgment Before Shipping Off

When you’re on the water, use common sense.

Make sure your boat is operating properly before leaving the dock. According to the USCG, equipment failure, hull failure and machinery failure resulted in 425 reported accidents, 152 injuries and 31 deaths in 2015.

Don’t take the boat out in poor weather conditions; you may be putting yourself at risk for more than just an unpleasant time. The USCG notes that a storm can cause limited visibility, making you more vulnerable to accidents.

And less-than-ideal weather conditions mean more than just storms. Intense heat can cause you or any passengers to suffer from dehydration, heat exhaustion, heat stroke or intense sunburns. Be sure to stock the boat with plenty of sunscreen and water, and always check the forecast before departing. Weather and hazardous waters led to 175 injuries and 120 deaths last year, according to the USCG.

Maintain a safe speed, especially in crowded waters. The USCG reported that excessive speeds accounted for 289 injuries and 18 deaths in 2015. Safe speeds allow drivers more time to adjust the boat’s path when other vessels appear, thus limiting the chances of a crash.

Stay alert and appoint a co-captain. It’s simple: If you’re not paying attention, you could hit a swimmer, a smaller watercraft, such as a jet ski, or another boat. Appointing a co-captain adds another set of eyes watching the water, helping you properly operate the boat, and ensures that if you’re injured or incapacitated, there’s another person on board who can get you and your guests home safely. Operator inattention yielded the highest number of accidents (551) and injuries (353) of the 30 categories listed in the USCG’s 2015 report.

Avoid buoys and larger watercrafts that can’t stop or turn quickly. Buoys and other navigational aids are in place to help you cruise the waters safely, so allow plenty of space when passing them. And smaller boats are easier to navigate than larger vessels, such as yachts, so be respectful as you near bigger boats.

Lastly, make sure you have enough gas to last the duration of your trip. The last thing you want is to be stuck miles from the shore or dock and have to call for a tow.

Don’t Let the Ship Sail on Safety

Summer is all about fun on the water. Use common sense and know your state’s laws to help ensure safe trips for you and your passengers so you can all achieve that blissful, carefree feeling on the water.

Content complements of Safeco Insurance. For more information, click here

Mitchell Creek Marina, 1260 Livingston Boat Dock Road, Allons, TN 38541 | Reservations: 866.533.1842 | General Information: 931.823.6666

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