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Old 06-06-2011, 02:04   #91
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Re: USCG Considers Mandatory PFD Use !

"There ought to be a law!"
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Old 06-06-2011, 02:33   #92
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Re: USCG Considers Mandatory PFD Use !

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Originally Posted by captain58sailin View Post
"There ought to be a law!"
exactly If its in Australia why not the US
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Old 06-06-2011, 05:54   #93
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Re: USCG Considers Mandatory PFD Use !

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I am shocked and appalled to this lack of deference to those that have been put in charge of us. To quote a famous American.

"Until we learn to blindly follow the orders of our leaders we can never be free."

-Major Frank Burns

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Old 06-06-2011, 09:02   #94
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Re: USCG Considers Mandatory PFD Use !

remember the uscg had a commndant who decided to spew the words---"the number one threat to homeland security is the recreational boater"--he also was the jerk who was the advisor or whatever he was for bp in th spill situatioon-- not a nice nor knowledgeable man. thi sis what we have running our boating laws... similar, different names than thad allen had, but5 same ideas. lol have fun. i loved 4077 mash.. was awesome fun. i donot love the current trend in us politix--suxx bad --is a big joke south of kali.....LOL
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Old 06-06-2011, 10:46   #95
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Re: USCG Considers Mandatory PFD Use !

Lets face it, most government regulations are intended to protect us from harm -whether from others, or from external forces. One can argue that housing/construction standards are another example of our 'nanny' states - "If I want to live in a fire-trap, so be it." So too for the regulation of banks and investment firms, "Some investments are riskier than others, but the risky ones often have a better rate of return; anyway, I do my research and can protect myself just fine, so why spend tons of money interfering with business?" Or, "why require all cars to be equipped with seatbelts and airbags and collapsible steering columns - I'd rather take my chances and save the money!'

And do things change if we are talking about children - lets say under the age of 16? Should they face unnecessary risk just because their parents are idiots? Would it be alright to require them to wear lifejackets/pfd's? And if we are attempting to spare them from harm, why should their parents be allowed to kill themselves in accidents/events that would be preventable? If their sole provider dies, who picks up the tab? There are definite costs to society.

Further, what about the risks to potential rescuers? If someone falls out of a small boat without a lifejacket, the window of opportunity for a resuce is bound to be much shorter. Nearby boaters are, therefore, going to be more inclined to make a poorly planned rescue attempt - perhaps jump into the water after them (especially if they are injured/unconscious).

It is very easy to say that it will effect no one but ourselves if we choose to be imprudent, but that is rarely the case. All we can hope for is a bit of balance from the powers that be and, I suspect the proposed regulations do just that. I am pretty confident that stats will show that the boats to which the regulations apply have a much higher rate of fatalities from drowning than larger vessels.

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Old 06-06-2011, 13:58   #96
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Re: USCG Considers Mandatory PFD Use !

P.S. For those like Scoobert who believe that we don't need the USCG, let alone their imput into regulations ("I would call Sea-Tow, not the USCG"..."I would prefer no government at all"), I suggest that you consider the approach that is taken by private enterprise: professional sports leagues all have rules to protect athletes from themselves. When helmets were first mandated in the NHL, they had a grandfather clause so that players already in the league were exempt; and, even though it now seems crazy to play without one, most who were able to refuse, did.

Many leagues also now have rules regarding concussions, so that players need to be medically cleared before re-entering the fray. Without such rules many players would risk serious brain injury by returning prior to being free of the effects of post-concussion syndrome (and where there are no rules, many have). The list goes on and on and, in the macho world of pro sports, if safety equipment was not mandated, many would not wear it.

Why does even private enterpirse believe that choices over one's own safety need to be regulated? Are these 'nanny-leagues' because they do? No, the reason is very simple. Professional sports leagues recognize that avoidable injuries to players hurt not only the individual players, but their team.

For most of us, our 'team' is our family. And just as in team sports, the unnecessary loss of your life will cost not only you, but your team. Even without considering the indirect financial costs to the rest of society that occurs when someone with support oblibations dies, there is also the huge emotional impact on surviving family members. We are already required in most places to carry life preservers for everyone on board a vessel; it stikes me that a requirement that those who are in vessels that are particularly at risk must actually wear them and not just carry them, really isn't that much of a stretch.

Brad
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Old 06-06-2011, 14:53   #97
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Re: USCG Considers Mandatory PFD Use !

For time immemorial, nature has used a process of natural selection to IMPROVE almost all living things on the planet. Mankind (and worthy of note... Only RECENT Mankind) has endeavored to bring everything within the common denominator of the stupidest, clumsiest, least ambitious, and least capable of those among us.

I might also add that this is mostly a "Western", first world trait; in the "lesser" developed places I've been, I have noticed quite a lack of effort to debunk Mr Darwin. The point of my rambling is that somewhere we need to say enough is enough! Somewhere we need to encourage personal responsibility, and liability for one's actions. Last year in Mexico, I was walking down the street and encountered an excavation for some sort of utility.... There were no fences, no tape, no cones... No warning whatsoever! The locals explained it to me that THEY were smart enough to not fall in the hole, and if one unfortunately did...... There were no lawyers to file suit!

IMHO, the whole "protect the masses from themselves" is not altruistically driven, but rather a product of greed.
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Old 06-06-2011, 15:29   #98
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Re: USCG Considers Mandatory PFD Use !

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For time immemorial, nature has used a process of natural selection to IMPROVE almost all living things on the planet.
Wow, huge thread drift here, but actually "natural selection" rarely creates improvements in beings, it creates differences based on niche exploitation. Is one bird species an improvement over another? Are humming birds somehow an improvement over pelicans? Pelicans are much further back on the evolutionary scale.

How are Elephants an improvement over dinosaurs?

In fact evolution doesn't produce improved societies, it rewards individuals of a species that by chance have a physical trait that helps that individual exploit a specific environmental challenge. The ones that died off weren't "dumb" or of lessor intelligence, they just weren't lucky enough to have longer legs, or a smaller beak, or thicker fur when the time came to need them.

Are whales too stupid to avoid slaughter, or are we so stupid that we almost wiped them out?
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Old 06-06-2011, 16:10   #99
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Re: USCG Considers Mandatory PFD Use !

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In fact evolution doesn't produce improved societies
Probably, but we are a boating forum and while natural selection around here would improve the quality of the forum, we don't really practice it as well as we might. The place would get pretty lonesome for those few left. We really don't need this much thread drift nor the political ideal that you "shouldn't have to if you don't want to".

My instincts say you won't anyway so - who cares? Why do the rest of us need to know? If you should be close enough to shore to get caught natural selection says next time you'll be farther out or have your PFD on. If you can afford the fine then - get over it. If you end up dead then later on I'll close the thread when the nit whits out of hand and too far off topic.

Natural selection is actually very poor at fixing stupid. It is more a process of "advantage" rather than disadvantage. Disadvantage was the prime tenant of Jean Baptist Lemarck. This gets into the idea if you don't need it you lose it and better still that if you do need it you can get it. Darwin evolution pretty much blows this away but it does still feeds a lot of really fun "junk science".

Quote:
Are whales too stupid to avoid slaughter, or are we so stupid that we almost wiped them out?
Curious but not really boating related. We need to select in the "all about boating" category. Please state your answer in the form of a question.
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Old 06-06-2011, 16:43   #100
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Re: USCG Considers Mandatory PFD Use !

Anyway these posturing by our officials sometimes indicate policy shifts or don't. By suggesting something they don't actually mean to support it in policy. But they might later on, if it were the expedient thing to do.

Welcome my friends to the new century. If A Brave New World and 1984 didn't float your boat, you're on board. Double speak is the wave of the future, plain speaking is passe.
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Old 06-06-2011, 16:47   #101
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Re: USCG Considers Mandatory PFD Use!

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In the northern latitudes life jackets are not intended to save lives; it is to make finding the corpses easier so the families don't have to go on not knowing what happened to their beloved ones.
I have posted this site a couple times in different forums.

Cold Water Boot Camp

Dr. Gordon Giesbrecht AKA Professor Popsicle, has conducted some good studies on survival in cold water.

Quote:
Lifejackets...your first line of defense against cold water immersion.
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Old 06-06-2011, 21:51   #102
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Re: USCG Considers Mandatory PFD Use !

I was raised in the cold water boot camp. Around here going overboard is pretty much a death sentence, help being available or not. You can survive for a time, eventually the water wins, and for those of us, who have survived on these waters for any length of time; develop a completely different mind set and situational awareness than those whom live in and were raised in a warm water environment. I don't like someone telling me I have to wear a life jacket, I am all too aware of the consequences if I make a mistake. I also am not a fan of anarchy, I work and live in areas of the world that have a tantamount of anarchy and it is not a picnic by any means. There is a balance in there somewhere. With regards to Darwin, survival is given to the most adaptable of the species, not the smartest or the strongest.
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Old 07-06-2011, 06:53   #103
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Re: USCG Considers Mandatory PFD Use !

Captain58, I hear you. I don't like anyone telling me what to do either. Having said that, until seatbelt installation and utlimately use was mandated, people didn't wear them. I believe it was Ford Motor Company that first made seabelts an available option in the 50's - and virtually no one ordered them. When seatbelt use was mandated where I live, I joined the chorus of boos and complaints. But I wore them as I couldn't afford the fine. Now - well, now I wouldn't leave my driveway without belting up and it has nothing to do with the fine. Without the feel of a shoulder harness across my torso, I am uncomfortable in a moving vehicle.

About 10 years ago I purchased as 1957 Karmann Ghia lowlight as a toy. It was, due to year of manufacture, exempt from our seatbelt legislation. I wanted to keep it original in terms of appearance and hence had no intention of installing seatbelts. Guess what? I could never enjoy driving it. At one point I thought about adding lap belts, but even those wouldn't have added sufficient comfort. (Yes, comfort is the corrrect word, albeit from a psychological perspective). I ended up giving the car to my father-in -law (in-law jokes not required).

To some extent, seat belts are like a security blanket. You get to the point that you simply feel more safe and secure if you have them on (and lets face it, there were other safety issues with the Ghia such as a gas tank over your lap and no collapsible steering coumn that I was able to live with). I suspect that wearing PFD's will be the same. Inflatable units with a harness are minimally intrusive (like seat belts) and they save lives. And while I hate being told what to do, eventually I suspect I will reach the same comfort level with them (and discomfort without) that I now have with seatbelts.

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Old 08-06-2011, 14:04   #104
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Re: USCG Considers Mandatory PFD Use !

This isn't the same as seat belts. A few differences:
* These are quite expensive. Close to $100/person. And if you wear them, the cost goes up -- they get wet, they deploy. And the instructions suggest re-arming on a regular basis! Compare that cost to $15/person for non-inflatable ones that can't be worn on hot muggy days, but meets current regulations.
* Seat belts are no where near as uncomfortable, even in the early days. Wear a vest for an hour on a 100F day while rowing, and compare that to seat belts.
* Cars spend 90% of their time in dangerous operating regions. If occupants of cars routinely spent much of their time on roads with a 5MPH speed limit, the seat belt rule might be questionable. While I almost always wear a seatbelt, I usually don't put it on when I need to move my car to a different spot in the driveway -- and fortunately, have never gotten a ticket for it. A PFD is a good idea for a PWC. I wear a PFD on my 19' Lightning in heavy air. I don't think a PFD makes sense in July on a tender rowing 100 yards to shore. Unlike cars, there is no where near as much uniformity in "operating regions" -- and mandatory regulations can't handle that variation.
* In cars, user ability has very little impact on crash injuries. In boats, it has a LOT of impact. With three folks in that tender, all of whom are experienced boaters and accomplished swimmers, the drowning risk is substantially lower than it would be if there was only one person in the boat, new to boating, and a non-swimmer.

Harry
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Old 08-06-2011, 14:20   #105
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Re: USCG Considers Mandatory PFD Use !

Harry?
"This isn't the same as seat belts. A few differences:
* These are quite expensive. Close to $100/person."

Ah, seat belts today cost well over $100 per person. They are on inertia reels and require many extra parts to be fitted in the B pillar. And the better seat belts use explosive pre-tensioners, like airbag explosive charges, so you are looking at a cost well in excess of $100 per deployment.

"* Seat belts are no where near as uncomfortable, "
Ever meet a, ah, well-endowed woman? "The shoulder belt cuts into my boobs, I can't wear it." So now the better belts cost even more, as they are height-adjustable and there are adjustable anchors on the seat and the b-pillar on the better models.

"* Cars spend 90% of their time in dangerous operating regions."
As opposed to boats, where they spend 100% of their operating time on a toxic environment: Water. Can't breath it, can't walk on it. Well, most folks can't walk on it, or won't walk on it in public, because that tends to start religions and make life complicated. Cars? Yeah, you can almost always go overboard and walk away.

"* In cars, user ability has very little impact on crash injuries. " Aw gee, aren't we discounting those drivers who have 30-year safety records? The abilities of the use,r the driver, are rather central in car safety. On a boat? You don't go overboard because the skipper was being sloppy. Not often.

But don't let the facts distract you, the issue here is "Nanny State?" Or not.

I don't think PFDs or seat belts should be mandatory. I do think every boater should have to sign and file a statement before they can buy a VHF or EPIRB that reads "I'm gonna do what I want, I decline the right to have USCG SAR come save me." or "I'm gonna follow the rules, please respond to my distress calls."

And similarly on cars, put a telltale on the seat belt. If there's an accident and it shows I went through the windshield because I wasn't wearing the belt? My insurer, medicare, the state, the other driver, all get a free pass, none of them have to pay my bills or damages because it is MY FAULT.

That's the nice thing about the ocean: You get stupid, you get dead. The ocean doesn't lose any sleep over it, nor does it waste my money passing new legislation about how many crabs are entitled to eat my entrails.
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