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Old 24-03-2013, 10:57   #76
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Re: Sailor Washed Overboard Drowns

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Originally Posted by MarkJ View Post
Just seems stupid to be in fear of the medium you sail on. water.
I've noticed certain boats that always have their vests on when underway. I've never been able to decide if they were good responsible sailors because of this or whether they were always that worried? If always that worried I wonder why they go out boating at all.
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Old 24-03-2013, 11:01   #77
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Re: Sailor Washed Overboard Drowns

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Offshore sailing is one of the last available avenues for those who are free spirits and love the challenges of life without the interference of Society and its rules and regulations. How you sail and equip your vessel is a direct reflection of your personality and how you are hardwired for life. There are those that love direction, regulation and regimentation and others who operate best by their knowledge and instincts. For the former, sailing is merely an extension of their shoreside life where they dance to the beat of someone else's drum adhering strictly to the dictates that require jacklines, life jackets,Epirbs, life rafts, radar and the likes. For the latter, who uncomfortably exist within the boundaries of our "civilization," sailing represents the freedom from societies constraints where one can truly be self reliant in a truly existential world. My comments are not meant to be mean spirited or a condemnation of one group and a promotion of the other, but rather a realization that we all approach life in different shoes. My personal belief, however, is to practice good seamanship and common sense based upon my experience and my opinion that less is better. I truly hope that all the well intentioned souls who wish to regulate our waking and sleeping lives and create a society of well machined and obedient automatons will leave us alone. Of course, this story has not been finished. Good luck and good sailing.
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Old 24-03-2013, 11:25   #78
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Re: Sailor Washed Overboard Drowns

I would submit that we are still much safer on the sea than walking on land...
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Old 24-03-2013, 12:25   #79
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Re: Sailor Washed Overboard Drowns

After reading through this entire thread (clearly, I've too much time on my hands!), the concern about auto inflate PFD's going off and trapping the wearer below during a capsize I believe is stretching the 'what if' scenario a little far. Any one who has been aboard when a boat turns turtle would know that the level of disorientation is normally severe and to get out of an overturned sail or power boat requires more luck than good judgement. Keeping your head is paramount. I recall vividly to this day being below aboard a seineboat in the PNW when we hit a rock and turned over. Fortunately, I fell downward into the wheelhouse but had to fight my way through a bunch of purse line stowed beside the wheelhouse slider, crawl across the overturned deck and duck under the bullwarks to reach air above the ocean. The rest of the crew were on deck, thrown or jumped overboard and were picked up by an adjacent fisherman as was I, eventually.
Familiarity with your surroundings really helps and the will to keep fighting becomes your pathway to survival.
After working many years commercially on the water, I had never heard of anyone using a lifeline or PFD routinely during their time aboard. If the vessel was sinking, you grabbed what ever would keep you afloat but we didn't sleep with a life preserver. We did sleep in our clothes because the water temps in winter were so cold, at least you had a chance of surviving if you had a couple of layers between you and the water. Mind you this was long before the days of survival suits which are the rule to have aboard today. I can imagine trying to exit an overturned vessel with a survival suit on... not much chance of that being successful, I imagine. Cheers, Phil
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Old 25-03-2013, 10:12   #80
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Re: Sailor Washed Overboard Drowns

On my one cruise from Antigua, I took a couple from Antigua to Tortola. The first thing they did when the arrived in Antigua, (after cleaning the boat to their liking ) was to rig jack lines. For the entire trip when going forward one or the other would always clip on. I admired them for this behavior. We never had heavy seas. I never clipped on. Sadly one of them Pete, died of a heart attack far from the sea. I'm sailing inland waters still not clipped on. I still admire them. I think its a wise choice and should I go outside again or sail in heavy weather, I will take up this practice.
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Old 25-03-2013, 10:54   #81
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Re: Sailor Washed Overboard Drowns

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I've noticed certain boats that always have their vests on when underway. I've never been able to decide if they were good responsible sailors because of this or whether they were always that worried? If always that worried I wonder why they go out boating at all.
I am that responsible. In the PNW falling overboard without a pfd has a good chance of being fatal.

An inflatable pfd must be worn when on deck to be legal.
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Old 25-03-2013, 12:11   #82
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Re: Sailor Washed Overboard Drowns

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I am that responsible. In the PNW falling overboard without a pfd has a good chance of being fatal.

An inflatable pfd must be worn when on deck to be legal.
Is that a crucifix at your helm in your avatar?
(not that theres anything wrong with that).
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Old 25-03-2013, 12:15   #83
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Re: Sailor Washed Overboard Drowns

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Is that a crucifix at your helm in your avatar?
(not that theres anything wrong with that).
Nope - no crucfix. Just a reflection off my pfd and a wheel spoke.

Even though my tag line mentions God, I am more spiritual than religious.
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Old 25-03-2013, 12:24   #84
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Re: Sailor Washed Overboard Drowns

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In the PNW falling overboard without a pfd has a good chance of being fatal.
Depending on water temps, it has a good chance of being fatal even with a pdf, so the lessen should be, don't fall in.
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Old 25-03-2013, 12:32   #85
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Re: Sailor Washed Overboard Drowns

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I've noticed certain boats that always have their vests on when underway. I've never been able to decide if they were good responsible sailors because of this or whether they were always that worried? If always that worried I wonder why they go out boating at all.
Around here, the ones who wear their vests on in the harbor are the ones who are taking sailing classes. However, its a rule that all racers have a life jacket on when racing.
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Old 25-03-2013, 12:37   #86
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Re: Sailor Washed Overboard Drowns

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In the PNW falling overboard without a pfd has a good chance of being fatal.
Depending on water temps, it has a good chance of being fatal even with a pdf, so the lessen should be, don't fall in.
Up here in Lake Superior the PFD's are used so that the bodies can be recovered. The cold water is lethal. Without the PFD the relatives have to wait for 7 years (in most cases) for the state to officially declare you dead.
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Old 25-03-2013, 13:23   #87
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Re: Sailor Washed Overboard Drowns

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Around here, the ones who wear their vests on in the harbor are the ones who are taking sailing classes. However, its a rule that all racers have a life jacket on when racing.
Yep. The sailboats with the sail covers off and halyards attached while away from the dock are probably used for lessons as well. They are also the ones practicing MOB drills.
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Old 25-03-2013, 13:28   #88
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Re: Sailor Washed Overboard Drowns

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Depending on water temps, it has a good chance of being fatal even with a pdf, so the lessen should be, don't fall in.
One hand for yourself, one for the boat, move to the bow on windward side, be aware of danger areas, use your tether (as needed). Know how to stop the boat. Know how to do an MOB upwind and downwind and under power.

If you do go over, pinch your nostrils and cover your mouth. Assume the HELP position.
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Old 25-03-2013, 15:55   #89
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Re: Sailor Washed Overboard Drowns

When underway, we use auto-inflates, tethers, and jacklines.

Clip on when out of the cockpit.

If alone above decks after dark, clip on even in the cockpit.
{I've noticed that for some reason I can't see approaching waves very well after dark.}

We've two tethers with that "Y" thingy on the end, semi-permanently attached to the jacklines, one each port/stbd, that sort of dangle into our center-cockpit when unused. Another two straight tethers lead from the helm and can be grabbed prior to leaving the companionway.

Although I've yet to fall overboard (touch teak) my wife did - once. With an adrenalin surge and muscles of the younger man that was I, she came back aboard without using our fancy lifting rig. Now, her tether replaces my older arms.

I won't defend what we do, nor why. None of you reading this is Captain on my boat.

You do on your boat as you will, with no need to defend that to me.
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Old 25-03-2013, 16:19   #90
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I am about to buy my first decent life vest. I am leaving for 6 days from ft. Lauderdale going south to Biscayne bay and then up the gulf spam back at the end to earn my ASA Basic Keelboat, Coastal Cruising and Bareboat Charter from Blue Water School of Sailing.
What kind of life vest should I get? I am then gonna buy probably an IP27 sailboat so i want to get something that will last. Should I get one of the expensive ones that also have a harness or should I just get the basic inflatable. The ones with a harness seem pretty expensive at West Marine. Are there other places in USA that sell them? Any input would be appreciated... Not planning on crossing oceans but I guess that doesn't matter because accidents can happen anywhere.
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