Boater advocacy group offers free boat prep help


Colorado State University’s (CSU) tropical weather and climate researchers, long known for their annual hurricane forecasts, are calling for the 2024 Atlantic hurricane season to be “extremely active.” Above-average warm waters in the eastern and central Atlantic — “fuel” for a hurricane — as well as expected La Niña conditions later this summer and fall, which decrease vertical wind shear, contribute to the potential for increased storm formation this season.

While past storm forecasts averaged just 14.4 named storms and 7.2 hurricanes per season (1991-2020), CSU researchers predict 23 named storms this season, which begins Saturday, June 1, with 11 expected to reach hurricane strength (winds of 74 mph or greater). That could mean more boaters on the coast may find themselves unexpectedly in the “cone,” or predicted path of a hurricane, and needing to make preparations to protect their boat to lessen the chance for damage or loss.

They can start planning now with help from the national advocacy, services and safety group for boaters, Boat Owners Association of The United States (BoatUS), which offers free boat, yacht club and marina preparation information at BoatUS makes this information available to all boaters in hurricane regions. Membership is not required

An extensive library of hurricane-preparation videos and BoatUS Magazine articles containing proven tips and techniques amassed from the nearly four decades of post-storm recreational vessel recovery, salvage and wreck-removal experience are offered online.

Downloadable guides include “BoatUS Magazine Hurricane Preparations,” “Preparing Boats and Marinas for Hurricanes” and an easy-to-download “BoatUS Hurricane Preparation Worksheet” to take with you to the boat.

To help know when to prepare, an Active Storm Tracker helps keep boaters up to date on the direction and intensity of incoming storms, and the BoatUS App (available at offers text alerts.

The Atlantic Hurricane Season ends Nov, 30, but in recent years, hurricanes have occurred outside the typical start and end dates.