Sailboat Offshore Damage Control Check-list

Dca Kit Jpeg

In addition to being an industry supporter of the Newport-to-Bermuda Race, McMichael Yacht Yards & Brokers is a sponsor of the upcoming Storm Trysail Hands-on Safety-at-Seminar that provides a range of safety tips and guidelines for sailors of any level. Here is what STC prescribes for damage control equipment for boats going offshore. Even coastal cruisers should have most of these tools.

Damage Control tools and supplies should be stowed in containers so they are available at short notice. Location should be noted on the posted Emergency Chart. Larger items such as timber, spare shroud, drogue, and emergency tiller should also be noted. In the corner photo is a charged power pack drill, rolled lead sheet with pre-drilled perimeter, self- tapping screws with matching nut-driver, and rubber mallet. This hull patching package is stowed together since in an emergency it would be used together, along with Lifecaulk.

Here is a more extensive list of recommended items.


Marine hose clamps: various sizes up to 7 inch
Tape: duct, self vulcanizing, Teflon
Seizing wire: big roll
Plastic wire ties: largest size
Bag of self-tapping screws (1-2 inches)
Bag of nails (1-3 inches)
Assorted SS or exterior Square or Torx Drive
Deck Screws 1.25”–3.5”
Bag of bolts (incl.4 inch carriage bolts with washers/wing nuts)
Caulking gun and minimum 4×10 oz tubes
Lifecaulk & 5200
Waterproof putty (West Stay Afloat): 2 pints
1 quart can of lacquer thinner
Spectra rope- 100’ x 4 mm
Supply of disposable examination gloves


Wooden plugs at each thru-hull
Bag of extra wood plugs
Foam plug (Forespar Staplug)
Shower pan liner
Rubber sheet, inner tube rubber
Tyvek home barrier paper
Dry suit neoprene
Dacron sailcloth (10 sq ft)
2×4 – two 6 foot sections
Wood block: 12x12x1 inch
Wedges: 3 pair various sizes
Plywood patches (can use storage covers)
Sheet lead: 15×15 inch rolled and pre-drilled perimeter
Hose: various sizes to match boat systems, extra long


3 identical Lithium batteries & charger good for all power tools; spare inverter
Cordless drill with bits and nut/screw drivers
Cordless angle grinder with 6 blades including metal cut-off wheels
Cordless sawzall–metal and demolition blades
Juice pack–miniature charger
Brace and bits; egg beater drill
Heavy rubber or welder’s gloves
Crowbar, hatchet, baby sledge (to tear down interior to access damage)
2 Hacksaws and 10 blades
Keyhole saw, wood saw
Big hammer, rubber mallet (for the lead, not wood!)
2 large drift pins (to knock out rig clevis pins)
Spanner wrench (for stuffing box)
Knife (sheet rock with extra blades)
Strap wrench (for large fittings)
Vise grips, pliers, wire cutters
Screwdrivers, crescent wrenches, Socket sets: metric, English (useful sizes, including for engine repairs)
Allen wrenches: metric, English


Spare shroud: 7×19 galvanized plow steel (5/16 inch 9000 lb. test for 35-40 footer); 10’ longer than mast height, spliced loop at one end;
10 wire rope clamps, thimble and shackle for other end OR 12 mm Dyneema (such as Samson Amsteel) also 10’ longer with eye splice in one end.
Galerider Drogue with 10 feet heavy chain and two shackles (see pix to right). Collision Mat: use storm jib or trysail