Know your Rules of the Road
Q. Ah summer, perfect for wasps...but also for anchoring and enjoying the weather. When dropping anchor what is the very minimum amount of anchor chain you should deploy to keep your boat safe?
A. If using just chain you should use a minimum of 4 x the depth of water. If using rope and chain then it should be 6 x the depth. Remember ‘if in doubt, let more out!'
Enjoying all that Chichester Harbour has to offer from the water is a great pleasure. However, it's important that to ensure that alongside the enjoyment you act safely and responsibly on tenders just as you would taking your main vessel to sea.
While seemingly leisurely, you shouldn't forget that tenders can be dangerous and potentially fatal.
The number one rule for using your tender is to always wear a life jacket - always! If things don't go according to plan, a life jacket could be the difference between a lucky escape and a fatal accident.
Other things to remember that will help keep you safe are:
• Don't overload your tender and keep the weight balanced - make two trips if necessary
• Carry a torch with you at all times, it could help you be found in an emergency
• Don't drink and drive. It's important to remain aware and in control whilst on the water
• Make sure weather conditions are suitable - if you're not sure, don't risk it
So enjoy the Harbour and make the most of the stunning Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, but remember to stay safe.
Paddlesports, such as kayaking, paddle boarding and canoeing are an excellent, low impact, healthy and fun way of exploring the Harbour.
However, when these craft get too close to birdlife and seals, they can cause disturbance, which can have negative consequences for their conservation.
We have recently produced a new, free leaflet for paddlesport enthusiasts to provide them with information on how to enjoy their time in the Harbour and protect wildlife when they are out on the water. This will be available to pick up from outlets around the Harbour including the Harbour Office in Itchenor, or you can download a copy here.
Some 10,000 boats share the fabulous recreational facilities of Chichester Harbour. At peak times the harbour can be congested and this can cause problems. However, the Conservancy believe that with a little thought and understanding everyone can enjoy the harbour and problems can be prevented.
A series of guides have been published (revised 2008) that we strongly encourage you to download and read. Hard copes are available from the Harbour Office.
These postcard size cards are available from The Harbour Offices in Itchenor and Emsworth along with Sailing Clubs, Marinas and from our Harbour Patrol.
Rules of the Road - Navigating Safely in Chichester Harbour
A simple guide to the collision regulations that have particular significance in harbour settings.
Essential Safety: Chichester Harbour
This leaflet is aimed at the less experienced mariner and aims to steer them away from difficulties in their first years.
Sailing and Powerboating in Harmony in Chichester Harbour
Answers to questions commonly posed by powerboaters and suggestions for ways for sail boat racers to share the facilities without spoiling everyone's fun. Updated 2012.
Please note the speed limit throughout the harbour is 8 knots.
If you have any particular comments or would like to arrange for a talk to your club or group please contact the Harbour Master.
Chichester Harbour Conservancy complies with the Port Marine Safety Code and produces an annual Safety Plan which can be downloaded as a pdf here. The complete PMSC document along with risk assessments is available to view at the Harbour Office. Please call 01243 512301 or email in advance of your visit.