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General Warnings & Instructions

Sailing is an exciting sport that can provide hours of enjoyment for you, your family, and friends. However, there are risks inherent in the sport, as well as with the equipment involved, that must be respected in order to avoid an accident, damage to your vessel, personal injury or death.

WARNINGS AND INSTRUCTIONS. You must carefully read, understand, and follow all of the warnings and instructions provided by Harken in order to avoid an accident. These warnings and instructions can be found on the equipment, in its packaging,in our brochures, on our website, or through our customer service department.

HYDRAULIC EQUIPMENT WARNING. Pressurized hydraulic cylinders can be dangerous and if handled improperly may explode, possibly causing an accident, damage to your vessel,personal injury or death. Cylinders should only be serviced by a thoroughly-trained and equipped hydraulic technician following the instructions in the manual.

 Even though Harken equipment appears simple and easy to operate (as intended by our design), our equipment should never be used unless you have a sufficient level of training and experience in sailing in general and with the equipment in particular. The amount of training and experience depends on a number of factors, including the size and type of your vessel, the weather conditions, and the task you are trying to complete. If you have any doubt whatsoever about your training or experience, please do not use the equipment. Please contact Harken or seek additional training.

AVOID ACCIDENT OR INJURY. Regardless of your skill level, in order to avoid an accident, damage to your vessel, personal injury, or death:

1. Loads on equipment can be significant, and shock loading from heavy winds or seas can quickly multiply that load to extremely high levels. All persons selecting, installing, using or maintaining Harken equipment must be aware and cautious of such loads. 

Select appropriate Harken equipment by using the loading formulas and charts provided in the Harken catalog or online at www.harken.com. Always confirm your selection with a rigging professional or contact Harken directly. 

2. Never, under any circumstances, exceed the capacity or Maximum Working Load (MWL) of any piece of equipment. The maximum working load may be found in our catalog, on our website, or through our technical service department. Loads above the MWL can cause the equipment to fail suddenly and unexpectedly.

The Breaking Load (BL) is the load at which equipment is likely to fail. It is much higher than the highest load equipment should ever experience, and should not,under any circumstances, ever be considered in selecting equipment.It is published for informational purposes only. 

3. Harken equipment is for use exclusively on sailing boats for normal sailboat applications for running rigging. Do not use Harken equipment for human suspension. Aloft rigging and maintenance must be left to rigging professionals only. 

4. Keep fingers, hands, hair, loose clothing, gloves, and tools away from moving parts. 

5. If you are securing any equipment to the vessel with screws or other fasteners, be sure you are installing the screw into solid structure, or that you use anchor bolts, and that the attachment is sufficient to hold the anticipated load. Otherwise, the screw could become loose over time, or otherwise fail unexpectedly, resulting in an accident.

6. NYLOCK® nuts must not be used after being removed three times.When you replace shackles and fasteners, use the correct Harken parts to maintain the proper strength.

7. Always have all components of your vessel, down to the smallest pulleys, inspected for wear, corrosion or deterioration at least yearly, and replace as necessary. 

8. Before manipulating any piece of equipment, be sure that all persons and objects are clear of the path of movement of all reacting components. 

9. As part of your maintenance procedures, and to keep your equipment in optimum working order, frequently flush it with freshwater. 

10. Always wear a personal flotation device and/or harness while on board any vessel, and especially while manipulating equipment. 

11. Always be sure all safety equipment and electronics are in good working order before you set out on your journey. 

12. For general boating safety information, visit the maritime organization in your sailing destination country (such as the United States Coast Guard at  www.uscgboating.org).