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Old 03-09-2012, 22:24   #16
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Re: Sailor Lost in Knock Down

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Eventually, we all make mistakes. If you want to tout not wearing seat belts when driving and not clipping in when sailing in rough weather, I think it's best to not mention it to others in a public forum.
Thank you for try to protect myself and others from an informed opinion that may be harmful. Clearly, I cannot discriminate between good advice and bad advice and need someone wiser to help me sort it all out.
Cheers!
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Old 03-09-2012, 22:30   #17
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Re: Sailor Lost in Knock Down

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Thank you for try to protect myself and others from an informed opinion that may be harmful. Clearly, I cannot discriminate between good advice and bad advice and need someone wiser to help me sort it all out.
Cheers!

I believe the whole "one hand for yourself and one for the boat" thing, but that's under IDEAL circumstances. In rough weather or turbulent seas we can't expect to hold ourselves on.

I remain concerned about the length of my tether. My neighbor was saved by his because he wrapped it around the mast. I'm thinking (inside jackline, along the cabin top), wrap the tether around the jackline and just scrunch down to move around. It would make sense to have a lower center of gravity anyway.

I've been here a lot tonight and I apologize to those who are tired of seeing my screen name, but I've learned so much.
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Old 03-09-2012, 22:55   #18
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Re: Sailor Lost in Knock Down

My motto is as others have said, 1 hand for the boat and 1 for yourself. I ensure everyone on my boat adheres to that.

It is tragic but he went doing what he loved.
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Old 03-09-2012, 23:05   #19
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Re: Sailor Lost in Knock Down

What I take away from this is if an experienced sailor with heaps of offshore experience meets with this tragedy, then any one of us could be so unlucky. Woulda, shoulda coulda does not apply here. Twist of fate does.
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Old 03-09-2012, 23:31   #20
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Re: Sailor Lost in Knock Down

The only reason my wife didnt go over the side during a knockdown 35 years ago was a safety harness. It was a normal night in the Sea of Cortez, and we got clobbered without warning. A harness is just like a car seatbelt. You wear them for the unexpected things and they help to keep you alive.______Grant.
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Old 04-09-2012, 03:24   #21
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Re: Sailor Lost in Knock Down

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I remain concerned about the length of my tether. My neighbor was saved by his because he wrapped it around the mast. I'm thinking (inside jackline, along the cabin top), wrap the tether around the jackline and just scrunch down to move around. It would make sense to have a lower center of gravity anyway..
Set jacklines closest possible midship. Try to jump overboard to test it, if you go over or under lifelines the tether is too long..
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Old 04-09-2012, 03:48   #22
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Re: Sailor Lost in Knock Down

I'm not sure I would try to jump over to test but the ideal of staying inside the lines is what I would want.
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Old 04-09-2012, 04:00   #23
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Re: Sailor Lost in Knock Down

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I remain concerned about the length of my tether. My neighbor was saved by his because he wrapped it around the mast. I'm thinking (inside jackline, along the cabin top), wrap the tether around the jackline and just scrunch down to move around. It would make sense to have a lower center of gravity anyway.
I use one of these. Very easy to take the slack out of a safety lanyard.

Grigri (climbing) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


Very sad news though.
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Old 04-09-2012, 04:41   #24
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Re: Sailor Lost in Knock Down

Just to give you an idea of tethers. Yachting monthly did a test this summer using a 65 kilo mannequin dressed in could weather clothes and attached by a tether. over the side with it.

Two things occurred - the tether immediately turned the dummy face down and the water rolled over the face. So much water that had it been a real person - he would have drowned by the water being forced down his throat.

Big surprise - it took 2 grown men to haul this dummy up to the side by the rail. It took 3 men to get the dummy back on board the boat.

Lesson - wear a tether clip it on either midships or on the other side of the boat. Make sure the tether is short enough that if you fall or get thrown - you stay inside the boat.

On my boat jacklines and tethers are mandatory when the weather starts acting up - acting up means anything over 25 knots - sometimes less if there are heavy seas.
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Old 04-09-2012, 04:44   #25
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Re: Sailor Lost in Knock Down

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I remain concerned about the length of my tether. My neighbor was saved by his because he wrapped it around the mast. I'm thinking (inside jackline, along the cabin top), wrap the tether around the jackline and just scrunch down to move around. It would make sense to have a lower center of gravity anyway.
We use double tethers clipping longer one to the other jackline and the shorter one as usual. When we need to unclip, we unclip one, reclip it, then do the same with the other one. This setup, in addition to ensuring that we're ALWAYS clipped on, provides better stability when going forward ans reduces chances of being thrown about in the cockpit.

We started doing this after reading a tether test in PBO where most tethers parted at less than stated loads. We also invested into Wichard double tethers with quick release after that article.
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Old 04-09-2012, 05:01   #26
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Re: Sailor Lost in Knock Down

We also always use double tethers so we can work our way along the deck. I really hard weather - we crawl
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Old 04-09-2012, 05:53   #27
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Re: Sailor Lost in Knock Down

Drysuits should be standard gear in any offshore sailors equipment especially in water below 50 degrees. I have them aboard my vessel and will use them in big seas and rough weather. I also advocate the use of helemts as well (such as the kind used in white water kayaing).

A previous post also mentioned life jackets with a crotch strap. Again a very smart bit of equipment to use.

My experience as a hard hat diver, surf kayaker, sailor and SAR pilot is where I have gained the wisdom of this equipment when it comes to being in and around the ocean.

Jack lines and tethering in is a no brainer in all but the most benign conditions. Those that think they can "hold on" have not truly experienced the power of the ocean. Hopefully they don't learn on their last day of this power.

Of course please decide for yourself. I will shed no tears for fools on the sea or in the air.

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My take of this specific situation is that the conditions were not very bad ('strong winds' but not 'storm') and not the sort of situation where he would have expected to get knocked down nor need a tether. I believe the round up/knock down was caused by the steering chain braking (Ned had a lot of miles on his boat).

My personal practice is to wear a dry suit rather than the more typical foul weather gear. I do this because the dry suit has both natural buoyancy and protects you quite a bit from the cold water. Those two factors combine dramatically extend your survival time in the water. Further, it actually keeps you completely dry - no drips down the sleeves or collar as with 'normal' foul weather gear.

There are all sorts of different philosophy's about using tethers. However, it is possible, and is standard procedure on some boats, to clip in as/before you climb up into the cockpit. Typically these boats stow their tethers clipped to hooks just outside the companionway, and you reach up and clip in your harness before you climb the steps.Then your tether either slides on a jackline on along the cockpit sole or you use a dual tether to clip in near the wheel and unclip from the companionway.
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Old 04-09-2012, 06:47   #28
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Re: Sailor Lost in Knock Down

Yes, I also have dry suits aboard but little experience with them.

The water in that area may not have been all that cold, mid fifties probably.

I didn't get that steering gear broke first, but that makes some sense.

Although I would have expected such a boat to have been running on auto pilot, piston to quadrent sort of thing.

Depending on exactly where they were, the Cabot Strait can get wind against current conditions. The largest waves I have experienced were in similar conditions a bit up the strait. 25 knots following wind but honest 12 foot seas, and with a short period. This year I had a couple of days there with 30 knots astern, but with a favorable current, and much smaller seas.
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Old 04-09-2012, 06:58   #29
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Re: Sailor Lost in Knock Down

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Set jacklines closest possible midship. Try to jump overboard to test it, if you go over or under lifelines the tether is too long..

I also have netting up, attached every 4" because I have that kind of toe rail. I don't think I would "try to jump overboard," though, because that's a really risky fall. But I could attach a sail bag to it...
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Old 04-09-2012, 07:12   #30
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Re: Sailor Lost in Knock Down

My point is you cant make the jump if tethered correctly..
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