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Fail to prepare, prepare to fail: Propulsion failure safety campaign


Over the last few years there has been a marked increase in the number of propulsion failure incidents within the Solent area. The majority of these incidents are the result of a general lack of maintenance. To reduce the number of incidents, Portsmouth International Port has joined up with Cowes Harbour Commission, ABP Southampton, KHM Portsmouth, and Langstone Harbour to help educate boatowners and raise awareness of the importance of proper engine maintenance.

Take a look at the tips below to ensure you get the most out of your season with no hiccups!

  • Fail to prepare, prepare to fail… Preparation is key for a stress-free season, so make sure your pre-season checks are thorough and cover everything, from the top of the mast to the bottom of the keel and everything in between.
  • Don’t grind your gears… Complete basic engine checks before you set out for a day’s sailing, such as drive belts and impellors.
  • Lost your spark? Proper battery checks will make sure you get the most out of the season, and your batteries.
  • Running on fumes Check your fuel levels and fuel system regularly to ensure smooth sailing, remembering that old fuel can cause issues for your engine.
  • Bon Voyage! Follow the basic principles of passage planning as this will ensure you have a safe and successful voyage.
  • S.O.S If you do suffer propulsion failure, it is important you call for help, such as from SeaStart, or the Coastguard if you require immediate assistance.

Throughout the year, we will be posting more information on our social media relating to different aspects listed above, to help you get the most out of the season.