Please select your home edition
Edition
Marina Exchange 728x90 1

Shall we say goodbye to 'Small Craft Advisory' and hello to 'Small Craft Warning'?

by Scott Croft 16 Apr 14:22 UTC
The National Weather Service is proposing renaming “Small Craft Advisory” to “Small Craft Warning.” © Albert Barkus

In a move that could simplify and potentially reduce misunderstanding of urgent weather messages used by recreational boaters to make critical boating safety decisions, the National Weather Service (NWS) has proposed renaming "Small Craft Advisory" to "Small Craft Warning" and is asking for boaters' feedback. Boat Owners Association of The United States (BoatUS) urges boaters to speak up now by taking a NWS survey for recreational boaters at www.surveymonkey.com/r/VZGX6BF. The survey closes May 24, 2020.

"Every day they go boating, boat owners check the weather and then make the decision to either head out or not," said BoatUS Government Affairs Manager David Kennedy. "We think the name change will help clarify what this means, leading to a better understanding of the severity of a marine weather forecast, and help give recreational boaters the information they need to make smart choices about boating safely."

For decades, NWS has used the Watch, Warning, and Advisory (WWA) system to alert users about forecasted hazards, but it has recognized this can be confusing. The proposal to rename a "Small Craft Advisory" to a "Small Craft Warning" is part of a larger effort to reduce the messages to just two flagship headline terms: Watch and Warning. NOAA also says the name change would better align with all other marine warnings - Gale, Storm, and Hurricane Force Wind - leading to greater understanding by recreational boaters.

Changing from an "advisory" to "warning" would not change the term's definition or meaning. While there is no precise definition of a "small craft," today a "Small Craft Advisory" is issued when sustained wind speeds or frequent gusts have reached 20 to 33 knots and/or seas or waves 4 feet and greater and/or waves or seas are potentially hazardous. The requirements vary slightly by region, and local conditions may also dictate issuing a Small Craft Advisory.

Related Articles

Alameda County Boaters: expired marine flares
Collection event helps address disposal challenge Boat Owners Association of The United States (BoatUS) is urging Alameda County residents who own boats as well as those who keep their boats in the county to take advantage of a Marine Flare Collection Event to be held Sunday, Oct. 18. Posted on 2 Oct
Five ways to keep your boat safe in winter storage
Will your boat be on a crook's hit list? Pretty soon, millions of recreational boats will be put into winter storage to await next year's season. As they sit unattended for months, they can easily become a target for thieves. Will your boat be on a crook's hit list? Posted on 23 Sep
The best boat winterizing checklist
And everything else you ever wanted to know about putting away a recreational boat for the season Boaters in much of the U.S. and Canada acknowledge the need to winterize their boat's engines each autumn. But what else can go wrong? Posted on 17 Sep
Enter to win $15,000
BoatUS Foundation and Berkley Recast & Recycle contest Have you ever wondered how old, discarded fishing line is recycled and reused? You may be surprised to learn that turning fishing line into new products is labor intensive, requiring a series of workers to comb through Posted on 25 Aug
Gulf boaters prepare for Marco and Laura
Tropical Storm Marco, expected to run along the Louisiana coast tomorrow A one-two punch with two tropical storms bearing down on the Gulf Coast this week is getting the attention of recreational boaters, leading some to wisely haul out their vessels to a safe location and make storm preparations. Posted on 25 Aug
EPA isn't making it easier to choose right fuel
Only 22% of consumers know that regular 88 fuel has more engine-harming ethanol than 87 octane fuel With summer boating season in full swing, it's now common to see recreational boats being filled up at gas stations across the country. Posted on 15 Jul
Buying a boat?
Here's what they don't have to tell you Boat Owners Association of The United States (BoatUS) has helped hundreds of thousands of boat owners make good boat-buying decisions. Posted on 24 Jun
A new boating safety concern this July 4
With COVID-19 it certainly won't be the same Celebrating America's birthday, thousands of boaters are expected to hit the water this Fourth of July holiday weekend, recreational boating's traditional busiest time of the year. Posted on 23 Jun
BoatUS Collegiate Bass Fishing Championship 2020
A return to tournament angling with social distancing The BoatUS Collegiate Bass Fishing Championship presented by Bass Pro Shops starts tomorrow, signaling a return to college bass fishing competition in the era of COVID-19. Posted on 9 Jun
8 ways to love boating while waiting out COVID-19
Become a smarter sailor while saving big bucks Offshore Sailing School's learn to sail, U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary's Modern Marine Navigation courses free through May 15 Posted on 25 Apr
Marina Exchange FOOTER 138 South - Marlin 795 - FOOTER