Boating

The Port of Key West remains closed in the wake of Hurricane Irma, and the Coast Guard is urging boaters to stay away.

Alex Newberry

The Sarasota Sailing Squadron sits directly on Sarasota Bay. There are some 200 boats on trailers. Several boats not strapped down to the ground were pushed over sideways by the wind. One captain sank his sailboat on purpose to protect it.

Following the sinking of the El Faro cargo ship in October 2015, the National Transportation Safety Board has issued 10 new safety recommendations meant to better inform sailors of impending weather conditions.

The guidelines are being released after two hearings in Jacksonville into the ship’s sinking, which killed all 33 crew members aboard. El Faro set sail from Jacksonville toward Puerto Rico and sank near the Bahamas after losing power and drifting into the path of Hurricane Joaquin.

Photo: U.S. Coast Guard bia Wikimedia Commons

With more than 11,000 miles of rivers, coastlines, and waterways, new U.S. Coast Guard data shows Florida leads the nation in boating accidents and boating deaths, a trend that has been growing in Florida and nationwide since 2013.

The image of the liveaboard life in the Keys is free and easy — toss down an anchor and you're home. But there's one location off Key West where the U.S. Navy wants the boats at anchor to move on. Now.

Fleming Key is a small island off Key West with facilities that the public rarely sees, like the city of Key West's sewage treatment plant. And bunkers where the Navy stores weapons and ammunition.

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