Avoid Storm Trouble: Plan Ahead

2008 is shaping up to be an active hurricane season on the East Coast.

Boaters who ply the Eastern Seaboard probably associate hurricane season with late August to late September, but according to NOAA, the season officially started June 1 and runs through November 30. And NOAA's Climate Prediction Center projects that climate conditions point to a normal, to slightly above normal, hurricane season in the Atlantic Basin this year.

Careful planning for tropical storms and hurricanes is key to minimizing damage to your boat and avoiding personal injury. A new online video called "Keeping Your Boat Storm Ready," covers what to do before, during, and after a storm. The video, which was produced by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the Florida Department of Emergency Management, Sea Grant, the U.S. Coast Guard, and The Progressive Group of Insurance Companies, can be viewed at ().

Topics covered include how to develop a comprehensive preparedness plan, suggested equipment to have on hand, various ways to secure your vessel whether it's on a mooring, in a slip, or on the hard, and storm tracking.