Class A classified yachts


Last updated on September 21st, 2017

Class A classified yachts

Safety and comfort first


Van der Heijden Yachts is the starting point for design and construction of building a yacht that it will be classified as a Class A yacht. What does this mean? 

Since 1998, CE certification is required for all yachts entering or being sold in Europe obliging builders to respect certain standards. Therefore, are classified into four categories depending on their aptitude to confront navigational conditions taking into account both force of the wind and height of the waves. The categories are not to limit the area and distance of navigation (that is defined by security equipment onboard) but to sensitize the owner and/or captain of the boats capacities to navigate in complete security.
First you need to know about the Beaufort Scale. This scale is for classifying the force of the wind ranging from 0 (calm) to 12 (hurricane). It was devised by Francis Beaufort, an admiral in the British Navy, to uniform the description of the effect of different winds at sea.
There is a direct link between the Beaufort scale and yacht classification.  

  • A Class A  (Ocean) yacht is a vessel that is built to navigate the open ocean and surpass a force 8 on the Beaufort scale and waves higher that 4 meters. These yachts are constructed to be self-sufficient in hostile seas.
  • A Class B (Offshore) yacht is a vessel built to navigate on the offshore waters (200 miles and less) and can sustain up to force 8 and waves not higher than 4 meters.
  • A Class C (Inshore) boat is built to navigate inshore such as lakes, rivers, bays and close to the shore and can sustain up to force 6 and waves not higher than 2 meters.
  • A Class D (Inland or sheltered coastal waters) boat is built for protected or sheltered waters such as canals, rivers, small lakes and sustain a force 4 and waves up to 0,3 meters , temporary 0,5 meters

This is why a Class A yacht respects a rigorous building code more so than a Class B and so forth. But regardless of the class, it is strongly discouraged to navigate in a force 7 for the reasons of safety and comfort. Always consult the weather forecast prior to leaving port and check hourly the weather situation. 
Classification rules are developed to assess the structural strength and integrity of the essential parts of the hull, the reliability and function of the propulsion, steering systems, power generation and all the other features installed on board which contribute to guarantee the main essential services of yacht. In principal all Van der Heijden Yachts are designed and build regarding Class A. Exception to this rule are the yachts whose owners have requested specific adjustments which makes this classification unattainable. 


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