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Date: 20 June 2020 Preventing Injury, Step Edition.


All folks of a certain age become concerned about our health. Staying independent is Extremely important. One way to insure same is to be proactive in preventing accidents. I learned about that in a rather abrupt fashion. Details can be found in the Broken Arm Lessons article. Aboard Seaweed there are however other places that needed attention. Today I'll tell you about a $10 solution to one safety issue I was experiencing.

The first thing you should know is that I'm a big fan of slippers inside the boat. This is primarily because they are more comfy than my regular boat shoes. It is also a ritual, in that this is home and I can be comfortable here.

I wear inexpensive dollar store slippers, and repair them when the bottoms get holes.

Unfortunately though, slippers did not get named that because of the great traction experienced while being worn. They slide and that can be dangerous. This problem was most pronounced when stepping down into my forward cabin.

Schematic of Seaweed shown below: Step referenced
 is shown in the top drawing, starboard side of the boat next to the wheel.

An open doorway is next to the steering wheel. One step down and you're in my cabin. That is the slippery step.

There are of course a multitude of hand holds on my boat. The problem is that at bunk time I'm heading below with Skipper, my tea cup, a Kindle Paperwhite, the tablet and a phone. I am not an octopus with a multitude of arms to hold things. Usually I place all the peripherals near the doorway, except that time when I slipped.

I know. You know. We all know that was a dumb choice. Fortunately I did not fall, nor break anything. I took the mishap as a wake-up call. The step had become a dangerous spot.

I needed to resolve this ASAP. In the meantime I stopped trying to carry everything below at one time. In considering my options, I felt the best choice would be to add some non-skid tape to the edge of the step.

I found what I needed on eBay from a seller located in Hong Kong.
The price was less than $10 for 15 feet of two inch wide non-skid tape.

I surmised that with 15' of the stuff, when it fails there will be plenty more to replace the tape.

My goal was to cover just the OUTBOUND EDGE of the step.


Carefully I cut the a piece a bit longer than needed. Then I angle cut the corners. Though not perfectly sized, this is definitely Good Enough. I can state unequivocally that the addition of tape is a success. It prevents me from sliding forward.

Even though I do have handholds when stepping down into my cabin, the $10 solution was a good one. If/when this tape deteriorates or starts to pull away I can replace it with ease. Eventually I may add a strip to the edges of both steps into my pilothouse. In the meantime I hope you too will stay safe.


Lesson Learned: I believe that by paying attention to a potential accident I was able to proactively prevent any problems in the future.


Non-skid tape is an inexpensive solution to slippery steps. One piece across the edge is sufficient to prevent slips and falls.

Price, circa spring of 2020: less than $10 for 15' (5 meters) from a Hong Kong based seller on eBay. Mine is 2" wide and comes in a variety of colors. I chose charcoal grey.


Happy boating, and thank you for reading.

Addendum. 1 July 2020: A commenter asked where and how to purchase this item from an eBay seller. First, the primer on how to find the least expensive product is found in this article: Screening My Hatch (eBay advice)

The search term to use is: NON SKID TAPE ~ From there, search by price, lowest first. In checking, today I can buy 3m (15') of 5cm (2") grey non-skid tape for $4.41 and free shipping.  The seller is mhestore2009. The thing to know however is that sellers come and go. Today mhestore2009 is the least expensive however next week the price will differ. Always search by price, lowest first. Good Luck!

Have any of you tried the non-skid tape?
And, what is your experience with the tape? 

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2020, 2023

Categories:  Books, Gear, In the Bilges, Money, Security,

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