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Old 30-03-2015, 12:58   #46
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Re: MOB Procedures

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. . . I think the majority of MOBs occur in relatively benign conditions and alcohol is often a factor. In benign conditions you follow your checklist mentally, casually. If your in an ugly situation though, you still go through your mental checklist. . .
99.999% of the MOBs occur because the captain casually tosses a float overboard, clicks his stopwatch, then calls a drill. My point being that this is something that should be PRACTICED, not merely memorized. And maybe when it's inconvenient and everyone is loosey-goosey is the best time.
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Old 30-03-2015, 13:21   #47
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Re: MOB Procedures

I agree Ryon, practise is just as important as procedures, maybe more.

Statistically- 70% of water related deaths in the US are alcohol related, 80% are male. So I think my comment was accurate, most of the people who fall in off recreational boats are drunk men, from my experience they often have their flies open indicating they were peeing and lost their balance.

Unfortunately I high percentage are suicides or attempted suicides as well.

So yes, you should have procedures, you should practice, and you should expect your first MOB to be picking up your drunk friend after he fell in while taking a pee.

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Old 30-03-2015, 14:07   #48
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Re: MOB Procedures

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Williamson turn- Check
Why are doing a Williamson turn?

I have tried it under sail. If they MOB occurs while sailing upwind, you end up with the MOB down wind and you are unable to stop the boat.
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Old 30-03-2015, 14:19   #49
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Re: MOB Procedures

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Why are doing a Williamson turn?

I have tried it under sail. If they MOB occurs while sailing upwind, you end up with the MOB down wind and you are unable to stop the boat.
I wouldn't do a Williamson turn under sail, that was an illustration of how the mental check list process should work. I haven't recommended any procedures, just supported the existence of procedures.

How could I recommend MOB procedures for a boat I haven't done a risk and hazard analysis on? Ken finds his life sling works for him, so it's a great procedure for him, but I don't have one, I just have a boarding ladder.

If from some angle it looks like I'm recommending procedures, I'm not, people need to do their own risk analysis on their own boat, with their own crew and their own experience level. Which is exactly what the OP is doing. So I'm saying good for him, I support his approach to safety.

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Old 30-03-2015, 14:43   #50
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Re: MOB Procedures

Perhaps catamarans are different, because my experiences have been different.

I have a life sling and we have a simple drill for hoisting. But the reality is it ain't likely:

  • Some boats don't heave-too, at all. Mine is one of those. My other cats did, this one won't with any combination. It has to do with an odd keel shape. So unless you know you can do that in a blow, don't assume.
  • There is a high probability you will damage your jib (stretch the leach on the spreaders), perhaps fatally. Been there, done that. Just so you know.
  • Cat transoms are NOT death traps in a seaway. In fact, I've stopped in waves up to 6 feet simply to dive to clear something off the prop or rudder a number of times. I board using the ladder, and all it takes is a little timing. Almost fun, if the water is warm. If the person could not manage the ladder, I would strongly consider running down wind slowly and pulling them up that way, though I might use the side of the transom, not the back edge (smoother). The boat is light enough that generally it rises easily to match the waves.
  • I have special tether anchor points exactly 6' forward of and above where a person's chest is if standing mid-swim platform (we often land fish there). This makes it quite safe for a rescuer to work on the scoops in anything less than extreme conditions.
  • I don't get the engine paranoia. You really should know if you are in gear of not.
  • I don't get the paranoia regarding fouling lines. There should be ONE floating yellow line to watch, and it probably has some tension on it. The other lines should be gathered in before the approach. Obviously.
Another concern, which no one mentioned, is the water temperature. Do you carry cold-water gear for any potential rescuer (wet suit or dry suit)? Seems like basic seamanship, to me. We were out yesterday (38F water) and I kayaked for a while (yup, boarded off the transom in waves).



To me the concern is not up wind, it's down wind with the chute up. You are VERY likely to loose visual contact, since if you do some manner of quick stop you will paste the chute in the rigging, if you don't capsize first. Sure, we can drop the chute pretty fast, but it does take a few hands on deck, and if you are alone on-deck, your going to have to come back on GPS and pray. I use harnesses a lot with the chute up.


And as many have said, there is no sub for practice. What works on YOUR boat, with the crew you will actually have (maybe none)
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Old 30-03-2015, 14:56   #51
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Re: MOB Procedures

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Why are doing a Williamson turn?

I have tried it under sail. If they MOB occurs while sailing upwind, you end up with the MOB down wind and you are unable to stop the boat.
Sure. I'll take the heat for calling the Williamson turn. In cases where it takes some time to get your crew on deck and organized, your MOB can disappear in the distance behind. How do you find them most reliably? You note your course, do a Williamson turn, and return by your reciprocal. I know one captain who did this in a real emergency. They didn't even see their man until he had climbed up over their bow on his own!

Obviously, you wouldn't do this on a pokey day when you just need to do de-power and float up to your guy. Or if your ship can turn in its own length. But like the debris trail, it's a good tool to have in your pocket if you ever need it. I don't think either of these were considered by some here, and that's why I brought them up.
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Old 30-03-2015, 15:07   #52
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Re: MOB Procedures

Many of my students whom I teach are couples. I teach MOBs that can be done by one person. Dropping / furling sails is really not an option. The upwind MOB is great, as you do not touch the sails. There is a jibe, but it occurs with with sails sheeted in so there is little movement in the boom.

The downwind MOB is a bit tougher, but it can be done.
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Old 30-03-2015, 15:08   #53
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Re: MOB Procedures

This is one of those rare threads where absolutely everything said by everyone is extremely valuable. Lots to think about.

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Old 30-03-2015, 15:09   #54
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Re: MOB Procedures

I don't see the point in performing a Williamson turn in normal conditions. When performing a simple U-turn, an ordinary sailing boat will follow a track about 2 boat lengths from the initial one. Surely, you can't miss seeing somebody in the water 2 boat lengths away (or you should have your eyesight checked). Of course, it's different in fog.

Williamson turns have their use with large ships: their turning diameter is about 5 ship lengths with the rudder hard over. This isn't negligible with a 300m/1000'-long ship.

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Old 30-03-2015, 15:19   #55
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Re: MOB Procedures

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Sure. I'll take the heat for calling the Williamson turn. In cases where it takes some time to get your crew on deck and organized, your MOB can disappear in the distance behind. How do you find them most reliably? You note your course, do a Williamson turn, and return by your reciprocal. I know one captain who did this in a real emergency. They didn't even see their man until he had climbed up over their bow on his own!

Obviously, you wouldn't do this on a pokey day when you just need to do de-power and float up to your guy. Or if your ship can turn in its own length. But like the debris trail, it's a good tool to have in your pocket if you ever need it. I don't think either of these were considered by some here, and that's why I brought them up.
Going upwind, I heave-to immediately. The heave-to, sail-to,heave-to (a variation on the quick stop) can be done by one person. There is not need for additional crew, but additional hands are nice.

We do the Williamson under power while focused on the compass when there has been a delay in recognizing an MOB.. As we bear off 60 degrees ( a quarter turn of the wheel to 3 o'clock on most sailboats) we count it out in 10 degree increments on the compass, When we hit 60 we turn the wheel a half turn to 9 o'clock and count to 60, then count to 180. That completes the Williamson turn and we should be back on our wake. This eliminates doing math under pressure.

We use an Anderson turn if we are aware immediately of the MOB.
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Old 30-03-2015, 15:22   #56
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Re: MOB Procedures

Ryon, I don't think any body is being critical of your ideas, just enjoying some discussion. The Williamson turn is an excellent tool to have in your tool box. It kicks your rudder and wheel away from the PIW- most importantly, and it brings you back on your reciprocal course.


I did a procedural review for a decent sized hospitality cruise line a couple years back, and all their Captains in their MOB drills instructed crew to throw table linens in the water to mark position. Interestingly, they were also taught to put out fires with table linens. The Captains at this company were for the most part very skilled and experienced, but through their procedures and training they had inadvertently trained their crew to get table linens in all emergency situations, causing them to ignore the actual safety equipment which was plentiful. During my review I found an incident where several crew had attempted to fight a fire using a table cloth until one brand new freshly trained girl (having received more current training) showed up with an extinguisher and put the fire out.


The intent had been to train the crew to be creative and to improvise, the result was table cloths were going in the water instead of life rings. Because of this experience I had I now discourage the debris trail training.


It's worth noting because of the amount of Booze served on board, party boats get a LOT of jumpers.
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Old 30-03-2015, 17:15   #57
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Re: MOB Procedures

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. . . Interestingly, they were also taught to put out fires with table linens. . .
Maybe we should talk about fires next!
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Old 30-03-2015, 17:40   #58
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Re: MOB Procedures

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Going upwind, I heave-to immediately. The heave-to, sail-to,heave-to (a variation on the quick stop) can be done by one person. There is not need for additional crew, but additional hands are nice.

We do the Williamson under power while focused on the compass when there has been a delay in recognizing an MOB.. As we bear off 60 degrees ( a quarter turn of the wheel to 3 o'clock on most sailboats) we count it out in 10 degree increments on the compass, When we hit 60 we turn the wheel a half turn to 9 o'clock and count to 60, then count to 180. That completes the Williamson turn and we should be back on our wake. This eliminates doing math under pressure.

We use an Anderson turn if we are aware immediately of the MOB.
I agree, in both cases. Though I divide the compass into quarters for the second. I think your "degree" way may be better! More practice...
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Old 31-03-2015, 03:28   #59
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Re: MOB Procedures

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I wouldn't do a Williamson turn under sail, that was an illustration of how the mental check list process should work. I haven't recommended any procedures, just supported the existence of procedures.. . . ...
Right. And for those still skeptical about checklists -- the point is not necessarily to do everything on the list -- that may depend on the circumstances (under sail, under power, hard on the wind, under spinnaker, rough seas, calm seas, saw the guy go over, noticed only later, etc., etc.). The point is to have thought of everything ahead of time, so that you have it all at your fingerprints, so you can act systematically without trying to figure out or remember stuff out under pressure. And practice those parts of it which can be practiced, so that you have something in muscle memory.

Another thing -- it can't really be true, but it sure seems like it -- that the thing which you are really well prepared for, tends not to happen at all. Anyone else notice that?
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Old 31-03-2015, 03:33   #60
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Re: MOB Procedures

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......
Another thing -- it can't really be true, but it sure seems like it -- that the thing which you are really well prepared for, tends not to happen at all. Anyone else notice that?
Its true
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