Sint Maarten - Profile
- One of the northern Leeward Islands, this small island is shared between two nations. The southern third (Sint Maarten), is now an autonomous country within the Kingdom of the Netherlands and the northern part (St Martin), belongs to the French départment of Guadeloupe.
- Since becoming an autonomous country, Sint Maarten now has a new flag (red over blue with a white triangle at the halyard).
- Sint Maarten has become one of the leading yachting centres in the Caribbean, with excellent docking and a wide range of repair facilities.
- Unfortunately the island is in an area prone to be hit by hurricanes.
- Facilities are concentrated in Simpson Lagoon. Most repair work can be dealt with here.
- NOTE: Both sides of the island use the IALA-B (green to port) buoyage system.
Announcement by Police Force of Sint Maarten (Korps Politie) - 26 November, 2015
In light of the recent terrorist attacks in France and with the high alert French President Hollande has issued for all French territories, the authorities of the Dutch side of Sint Maarten have decided as a precautionary safety measure to also increase their security at major points of entry to the island, such as airport and harbour. Joint controls by the Customs, Immigration, Border Protection Service and Police Department at the border crossings between both sides of the Island will be part of this plan of approach. These security measures will continue indefinitely.
Yacht Security Reports and Information
February 2014: Multiple crimes against cruisers. See Report.
December 2013: Several anchored yachts were robbed at night while in Simpson Bay. Police admitted this has been an ongoing problem for the last 12 months. See Report.
July 2013: A locked dinghy was stolen from from the dock by the Grand Marche supermarket. See report for details.
Based on reports to Noonsite from cruisers, petty theft from yachts is on the rise in the Caribbean in general. Cruisers should take basic safety precautions and use common sense when leaving the boat or going ashore at night. Dinghy thieves operate throughout the Caribbean and best advice is to place your dinghy on deck and chain it overnight.
The Caribbean Safety and Security Net (firstname.lastname@example.org) provides information by anchorage or by island, so sailors can plan their cruising in the Caribbean with an eye to appropriate behaviour and precautions wherever they decide to go. Should you have suffered a boarding, robbery or attack on your yacht or have information about a yachting-related security incident, go to the CSSN homepage and click on the "Report an Incident" icon. The associated form is quick and simple to complete and ensures that all the necessary details are reported. The CSSN is the most comprehensive source of Caribbean security incidents against sailors. Remember, it is every cruiser's responsibility to ensure that incidents are reported. Also cruisers can subscribe to e-mail alerts, follow on facebook and twitter and listen to the SSB Voice Service.
The Caribbean Security Index (CSI) is a a tool to assist cruisers in assessing the probability of crime at ports and anchorages throughout the Caribbean. The CSI provides a means of assessing risk in a given area.
Also be sure to check the Noonsite Piracy & Safety Pages
Last updated November 2015.
Sint Maarten has a mild tropical climate, with steady easterly trade winds. July to November is the rainy season, while December to June is dry, although conditions vary little, June to November being the hurricane season.
The St Maarten Cruiser's Net can be heard at 0730 on VHF Channel 14 Mon-Sat begin transmission with a marine weather report. At 0900 Island 92 (91.9 FM) broadcasts a comprehensive marine weather forecast and overall synopsis, repeated at 12 noon. www.caribwx.com for concise Caribbean meteorological information updated daily at 0800 Mon-Sat. Daily weather forecast in St Maarten Daily newspaper
Meteorological Department Curaçao (MDC)
Provides weather services for Curacao, Bonaire, St. Eustatius, St. Maarten and Saba, within the Kingdom of the Netherlands.
Antigua and Barbuda Meteorological Office providing public weather forecasts for Antigua & Barbuda, the Leeward Islands and the BVIs.
For links to free global weather information, forecast services and extreme weather information see the Noonsite Weather Page.