Every year, many clubs and associations look forward to hosting a championship or regatta at their facility. These events are enjoyed by throngs of people and demonstrate just how popular boating and yachting events are in many parts of the Country. But there are particular concerns and risks surrounding any shows that take place on the water and involve yachts and other vessels. This is why you are required to carry adequate yacht club liability coverage.
It’s vital, not only to have coverage for the event but also to maintain policies that cover a plethora of risks and exposures year round. At a minimum, clubs or associations need a regatta liability policy to be in effect. While liability insurance is the minimum requirement, US Sailing recommends that clubs or associations consider a more comprehensive insurance solution since damages that may occur could exceed any standard policy that is in place.
Water sports offer extra concerns
Yacht clubs, community sailing programs, and class associations are best aided by obtaining the protection of a comprehensive insurance program that’s designed to protect, not only the club and its assets, but also the board members, flag officers, volunteers, members, and employees.
In addition to providing coverage for assets and people, the insurance program should also include protection for the wide range of activities common to most sailing clubs and organizations running regattas, borrowing boats, teaching sailing, teaching swimming, holding social events, and serving food and alcohol. No one wants to think about third party bodily injury or the possible loss of life, but these tragic occurrences are a real concern and coverage is needed for the on-water part of any general insurance program.
You can only benefit from a policy that covers your organization, its officers, directors, judges, sponsors, and the race management team, in the course of their duties on the water for any legal liability to third parties. This policy also pays for legal expenses to defend associated lawsuits. The coverage begins when the boats leave their mooring or anchorage and continue throughout the race until all have returned to their mooring or anchorage upon completion of the race. It’s a wise move to sit down with a reputable agent and discuss your needs for yacht club liability coverage before a serious issue arises.