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Boating Tips
Tuesday, March 31, 2009 at 10:02:02 AM

Here are boating tips that may help your boating summer season to be safe on the water.

Engine

Change:
• Spark plugs
• Points
• Engine oil

Examine for wear:
• Spark plug wires
• Drive belts
• Water pump
• Water hoses for cracks or bulging

Top up all fluid levels


Electrical
• Clean battery terminals and top up fluids with distilled water
• Check running lights
• Test windshield wipers and blowers
• Visually check wire connectors

Sailboat
• Inspect all rigging for frayed wire at swaged fittings
• Check halyards and shackles for wear
• Inspect masthead fitting and deck fittings for fatigue in the metal
• Meter all electrical lights and instruments to make sure they work before the mast goes up

Safety
• Inspect your PFDs; make sure they float, are not ripped and fit everyone onboard
• Change the salt tablet in your automatic inflatable PFD
• Check your fire extinguishers to make sure the gauges are in the green and that the chemical can still be shaken loose
• Restock the first aid kit
• Check all required safety gear is still on board and in good condition

Please see your owner’s manual for your equipment on board, as it may differ from this list. Do not take all these tips as a given – check out the boat supplier manual or call the supplier.

Inspecting the Bottom
• Replace zinc anodes
• Examine hull for unusual blisters or delimintation
• Caulk or fill the keel joint
• Inspect the prop for dings as these cause vibration and reduces fuel economy
• Prop shaft should be in good condition without pitting
• The strut bearing should be solid
• Check trim tab fasteners, make sure they are tight
• Clear strainers over thru halls
• Make sure depth sounder thru hull is NOT painted

Up on deck
• Check and seal leaks around windows and ports with Life Seal or Bostick (they adhere to Plexiglas)
• Refinish any wood trim either clean and recoat with previous or sand down and renew
• Air out covers and Biminis, weather proof canvas and clean vinyl windows
• Pull out your anchoring gear to inspect for line chafe that shackles are wired and in good condition
• Check the decks for spider crakes and repair as per “How to Repair Scratches in gel coat”
• Check your cleats, chocks and any other hardware, make sure it is not leaking or rusting

Inside your boat
• Clean out the bilge of all oil or debris including your limber holes
• Make sure your thru hulls and ball valves are in good condition and not frozen in place
• Check or replace packing glands around the prop shaft as well as the rudder post
• Clean your icebox with baking soda
• Empty your water tanks of antifreeze and rinse through with Fresh Tank
• Wipe down interior woodwork with teak oil or previous finish

Hull
• Wash with biodegradable boat soap
• For tougher stains, use Yacht Scrub on a scrub pad
• Rubbing compound will bring out the colour and luster
• Decide your finish – wax – polish – sealer and apply
• Be aware that household products were not made for fiberglass that has a 1/8 inch of gel coat protecting it and can yellow your finish

Please ensure workers and contractors are properly trained before providing service – contractors must provide you or your company with a WSIB Certificate of Clearance showing WSIB is paid in full.


WSIB CHANGES UNDERWAY
Friday, March 13, 2009 at 3:23:04 PM

LETTER TO THE EDITOR
WSIB changes underway, and more to come
The Toronto Star, March 07, 2009

Re: Audit slams Ontario workplace safety rebates, March 4

Your Workplace Safety and Insurance Board coverage distorts the system put in place in 1914 to serve injured workers with irresponsible and highly misleading reporting. Calling the WSIB-commissioned “consultants report” an “audit” suggests this review, which began long before the Star showed any interest, leads to a distortion of the outcome of this work. In addition this is the culmination of our board of directors’ work to “study” the issue and make sound rational changes, which I have been saying are needed for some time.

The WSIB has already made changes: no rebates where a fatality occurs; a new team to look at firms that have been fined for breaking the law; a special advisory committee of the board of directors to study the issue; and the hiring of a consultant to do research for the committee. It is interesting to note the same people who decried the selection of the consultants Morneau Sobeco as “bean counters” now claim vindication. This report is a tool that we will use to make our system better.

I will not sit idly by while a crusade continues to muddy the very turbulent waters around us and destroy a system that is always under scrutiny and review, and always looking for ways to improve. The focus should be on how we can eliminate the over 300,000 claims we receive each year; how we can eliminate the 100 fatalities, on average, that occur each year; and how we can help the families of the 260 workers who die from occupational disease each year. There are still tragedies that occur in our workplaces.

This is a very complex issue and needs calm and thoughtful deliberation. It also requires extensive consultation and under my leadership it will get both.



Steven W. Mahoney, Chair
Workplace Safety and Insurance Board