• Slow down
    You'll soon guess the theme - and true secret of enjoyable and safe boating, but to reinforce the message that follows - please stay at a slow, and in controlled speed at all times - there really isn't any rush, wherever you're going will still be there, and the journey is always far more important than the destination.
  • Ropes
    Take care when handling and stowing ropes.  Don't put your hand within a coil of rope, keep your fingers clear to avoid possible rope-burn or trapping your hand (and you) should the rope snag or be pulled unexpectedly.
    When not in use, coil ropes neatly and keep them away from anywhere feet may go - to avoid tripping.
    Always keep the free end of your middle rope near to hand at the rear and generally on the towpath side of the boat.  Be careful when flicking the rope to the other side of the boat to ensure you do not catch any items on the roof.
  • Keep hold of the tiller
    Don't let it swing around - it may swing around and knock you overboard.
  • Wear lifejackets if at all unsure
    and please, please, please - no matter how safe you may think it is to let children play on deck, help moor, or assist at locks, always ensure they do so whilst wearing the lifejackets we provide.
  • Weed Hatch
    It's inevitable that at some point you're going to have to remove the weed hatch to clear something (usually an item of abandoned clothing, plastic bag, wire or fishing line - hardly ever 'weed'!) that has got wrapped around the propeller.  There are two risks associated with this; personal harm and potentially sinking your boat, so follow these steps carefully:
    1. Secure your boat, even if only with the centre line being held by someone on the towpath.
    3. Remove the weed hatch and clear the obstruction.
    4. Reseat the hatch and ENSURE it is correctly sealed.
    5. Start the engine and whilst watching the secured hatch, apply some power. 
    If you see ANY water leaking from the hatch, you're running the risk of sinking your boat, turn the engine off, remove the key, and re-seat and re-seal the hatch.
  • Man overboard?
    Anyone falling overboard, or into the waterway whilst, as an example, helping to moor is at severe risk of injury from the propeller, so whatever the situation:


    Stay calm, it may very well be that after a second or two they'll find they can stand up (a lot of canals and rivers are not very deep).  Think carefully before throwing the life-ring - if you do, please don't throw it at them - it may seem fairly lightweight to you, but at speed, hitting them on the head with it could knock them out and make things worse.  Throw life-rings 'near to' them.  Better still, see if you can reach them with your bargepole or boathook - both of which are to hand on the roof in front of the cockpit.

  • Gas
    Ensure gas bottles are securely retained with the chain provided.
    Exercise extreme care when changing gas bottles - and remember that the connector thread has a left hand thread!  Also be careful when lifting or carrying gas bottles - they are heavy, always lift from the knees, keeping your back straight.

    If you smell gas inside the main cabin turn off the main gas stop-cock (located in the gas locker) immediately.  Open all doors and windows, moor at the earliest opportunity and vacate the boat.
    Once safely on the towpath or bank, call us immediately.  DO NOT use your mobile telephone onboard if you suspect a gas leak.

  • Fuel
    Exercise caution when filling with diesel.  Ensure there are no naked flames, smoking or sources of ignition.  Turn the engine off and double check that the boat is securely moored.
    Try not to over-stretch the filler hose, ensure you are correctly balanced and fill slowly.  Under no circumstances should you allow yourself to become distracted.

    NEVER allow diesel to spill into the canal or river.

  • Fire!
    All of our boats have fire retardant fixtures and fittings, but a lot of the inside is made of wood - so in the event of a major fire breaking out on board, leave immediately.  Go, go now.
    Don't bother trying to put it out with the fire extinguishers, they're not going to help and are only there for really minor stuff (and because we have to provide them). JUST LEAVE, leave everything behind, don't stop to get anything, ever, not even your Rolex - that's why insurance was invented - and the insurers would prefer to pay out for a Rolex rather than a dead member of your crew.
    Get off, and get off NOW!  Get everyone else off too, and be quick about it, but calm, don't panic, and once off, stay off. 

    Dial 999 or 112 from your cellular phone (DO NOT DIAL 911 in the UK), stay calm and listen to what the operator says. Speak calmly, and clearly, you are in very safe hands and help will be with you very quickly.

    Do not, under any circumstances, ever, for any reason, get back on the boat, ever, really, we mean it.

    Move well away from the boat, alert those moored near to you.
    Await the attendance of the Fire and Rescue Service.


OK, that's out of the way, once you've memorised it, try to memorise the rest:

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