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Old 03-03-2021, 15:39   #1
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Number of PFDs in your dinghy

OK lets start by saying I apologize if this is a stupid question. It is possible that cabin fever has made me a little crazy.

I was talking to a friend that is just getting into boating, and I mentioned that I would buy him some PFDs for his birthday. I told him you need one for each person on board. I always have extra pfds onboard including one of those packs of four that never gets opened.

That got me thinking about my dinghy. I usually have 1 PFD on top of the battery box. When it is just me onboard that works. When I have the wife and 2 kids with me, am I 3 PFDs short in my tender? I have had 5 people on my tender. My girls are all old enough, so they are not mandated to wear the lifejackets. Come to think of it my wife is old enough as well. I would rather not stack the boat with pfds.

How many lifejackets you have in your tender?

I am in the USA and my state basically says to do what the federal government says. Everything I find online is “All recreational vessels must carry one wearable life jacket for each person on board”. I would also be interested in how it is in other countries.

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Old 03-03-2021, 15:51   #2
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Re: Number of PFDs in your dinghy

Doesn't matter what kind or size boat. One per person. Period. Apparently not all countries require then though. We chartered a French boat on a French island in the Caribbean, not one PFD on board. Charter company didn't mention byo. Must be they don't require them.
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Old 03-03-2021, 15:52   #3
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Re: Number of PFDs in your dinghy

Anywhere in the US I always carry life jackets for all in the tender. In addition to safety, I find that local marine police love to check dinghies even if you are only rowing 50 yards to the dock.
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Old 03-03-2021, 16:10   #4
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Re: Number of PFDs in your dinghy

A tender is a boat, just like any other boat. The fact that some of us are fortunate enough to also have a bigger boat that can carry our smaller boat is completely irrelevant when it comes to required items for that smaller boat. If a boat of that size needs life jackets for every person (true everywhere in the U.S.) then you need life jackets for every person. If a boat that size needs a sound producing device, you need a sound producing device. If a boat that size needs to be registered, you need to register it......

For some reason we all seem think that our tender isn't its own completely independent boat with all the requirements of a boat of it's size because somehow the fact that it can be carried by our bigger boat magically makes it part of the bigger boat. I include myself there because when I bought my Mahe I forgot to have the dinghy listed on the bill of sale and then rightly had to go back to the owner and get it listed in order to register it. Don't forget, most of us own two boats!
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Old 03-03-2021, 16:17   #5
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Re: Number of PFDs in your dinghy

When in the Nanny State (US and parts of Canada), one per person. In the free world (anywhere else), not a single one. None. Never.
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Old 03-03-2021, 16:18   #6
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Re: Number of PFDs in your dinghy

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Originally Posted by Benz View Post
When in the Nanny State (US and parts of Canada), one per person. In the free world (anywhere else), not a single one. None. Never.


Same for us.
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Old 03-03-2021, 16:28   #7
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Re: Number of PFDs in your dinghy

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Originally Posted by Benz View Post
When in the Nanny State (US and parts of Canada), one per person. In the free world (anywhere else), not a single one. None. Never.
Not entirely true.

Dinghy PFDs required in some (all?) Australian states. Some Aussie states require the PDF be worn, not just carried.
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Old 03-03-2021, 16:32   #8
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Re: Number of PFDs in your dinghy

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Not entirely true.

Dinghy PFDs required in some (all?) Australian states. Some Aussie states require the PDF be worn, not just carried.
Should have qualified: anywhere else I've been. If I might get ticketed for not carrying them, then I do. I prob'ly would in Aus.
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Old 03-03-2021, 16:33   #9
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Re: Number of PFDs in your dinghy

In Canada, its one PFD per person in the vessel, including row boats etc.

Also:

A 20-year study by the Canadian Red Cross found that 50% of boating deaths could have been prevented simply by wearing a life jacket.
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Old 03-03-2021, 16:35   #10
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Re: Number of PFDs in your dinghy

Quote:
Originally Posted by Benz View Post
Should have qualified: anywhere else I've been. If I might get ticketed for not carrying them, then I do. I prob'ly would in Aus.
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Old 03-03-2021, 16:42   #11
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Re: Number of PFDs in your dinghy

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Originally Posted by Marathon1150 View Post
In Canada, its one PFD per person in the vessel, including row boats etc.

Also:

A 20-year study by the Canadian Red Cross found that 50% of boating deaths could have been prevented simply by wearing a life jacket.
Can you please share a link to that study? It sounds completely fabricated. Now maybe 50% of drownings while near a boat could have been prevented by wearing a life jacket. But who wears one when swimming?
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Old 03-03-2021, 16:59   #12
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Re: Number of PFDs in your dinghy

^^ I guess there is a distinction between a boating death and a swimming death (???)
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Old 03-03-2021, 17:01   #13
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Re: Number of PFDs in your dinghy

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Originally Posted by Pandor View Post
Can you please share a link to that study? It sounds completely fabricated. Now maybe 50% of drownings while near a boat could have been prevented by wearing a life jacket. But who wears one when swimming?
I'm going to go out on a limb and guess that most deaths didn't involve swimming for fun. Keep in mind that Canada doesn't have much in the way of warm, tropical waters either. Let's see... "Capsizing, falling overboard, and swamping were the most frequent boating incidents, associated with more than 75% of immersion deaths."

Taken from: https://www.redcross.ca/crc/document...rt_E_May30.pdf

Edit: one more excerpt from it mentions, "In accordance with the ICD, persons voluntarily swimming or diving from a boat are excluded from boating; these are classified as aquatic activities."
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Old 03-03-2021, 18:33   #14
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Re: Number of PFDs in your dinghy

Thank you for linking the report. I got lost just in the exec summary trying to follow the train of thought.
Quote:
occUPatIonal boatInG fatalItIes 11% (n=376) of 3,324 boating deaths involved occupation and 86% recreational or daily life. Occupational boating immersions included 297 drownings, 53 drownings with hypothermia, 5 deaths due to hypothermia complicated by drowning, and 11 hypothermia deaths. At least 55% involved very cold water less than 10°C. 62% were commercial fishing and 14% marine shipping; 9% of fishers and 12% of shipping victims were properly wearing a flotation device. Overall, 11% were properly wearing, 2% improperly wearing, and at least 54% not wearing flotation, possibly more since flotation was unknown for 33%. For 9% flotation was absent in the boat, and for 55% presence of flotation was unknown. Range of boats in violation of current regulations, with no flotation, ranged from 9 to 64%, with many unknowns. Incidents included 31% capsizes, 27% falls overboard, and 25% swampings; only 5% who fell overboard wore flotation, 9% in capsizes, 17% in swamping. There was no trend in non-wearing during surveillance. Most deaths occurred in Nova Scotia, British Columbia, and Newfoundland/Labrador. Numbers of deaths declined from 246 during 1991-2000 to 120 during 2001-2010.
So I was really only skimming to see if that fact was actually there and to find the context. Couldn’t find the stat you posted. But the conclusion seemed to zero in on: “primarily ≥15-year-old males and all Indigenous people. Review of various boating interventions has found the greatest effectiveness to be legislation mandating wearing, coupled with effective enforcement. Hypothermia protective garments may also be required in cold water conditions, frequent in the Canadian context, especially for occupational boating.”

So I guess at least in Canada you should also be wearing a dry suit along with your PFD. Especially if you are an older male or indigenous.
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Old 03-03-2021, 18:40   #15
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Re: Number of PFDs in your dinghy

The regulation is logical, a readily accessible PFD for each person on board and one throwable PFD, e.g, a cushion or ring. Very much like the regulation of having adequate lifeboat capacity aboard a ship [Titanic was a harsh lesson learned]

Yet, one can get ticketed for not having a PFD even if one is just recreationally floating a river, even on an inner tube, but if one is wading or swimming in that same river, one does not need to have a PFD. So go figure. You don't have to be wearing the PFD.

My wife and I were ticketed by two Fish, Wildlife and Game officers, for not having PFDs aboard while floating and alternately swimming a small river, [think big fly fishing creek], in Montana about five summers ago. Our "vessel" was a small two passenger inflatable Sevylor-type oar powered raft. Big enough to hold our ice box to keep our drinks cold and one passenger comfortably or two persons in cramped fashion.

I wrote up a legal brief, to give to the Justice of Peace at City court challenging the ticketing, and titled it: Row vs. Wade [a play off the famous Roe v. Wade, the abortion rights case] arguing how inconsistent and arbitrary the law was, as to the necessity of having a PFD. If I was in the small USCG rated raft, I would need to have a PFD, if I was swimming alongside or walking the raft through the shallows which is often the case when drifting or fly fishing as you have to pass the wade fisherpersons by dragging your drift boat across the shallows behind the fisherperson so as to not pass in the deep water in front of the wade fisherperson, that be proper river etiquette, NOT COLREGs Inland rules. Waders and swimmers have the right of way over vessels. Yet it is the wade fisherperson that is most likely to drown and should be wearing a PFD because if they fall in the water their loose fit waders will fill and the current will pull them under the surface.

The Judge's law clerk and the Justice of the Peace greatly enjoyed reading my legal brief describing the facts and the laws and the inconsistency and inequity on the public waterways. They asked if they could digitize my brief and send it to many other city and county legal officers, it was written with excellent legal reasoning and citations, but also very much tongue in cheek. The Justice of the Peace wanted to schedule a court session which would have required that the two FWP officers to show up at her court and would have required them to drive two hours from county over to attend and two hours back to their offices; she said it would be great fun and if I wanted I could request a jury trial which she said would have certainly invoked by jury nullification a non-guilty verdict, but I settled for paying one half of one ticket instead to the charge for two tickets, at $75 each; I did not want to waste taxpayer resources. She said she would contact senior people at the State level of the FWP and tell them that their officers were not welcome to be in Beaverhead County if they were going to be @ss%oles and that they sure as hell had better not trespass onto private properties. I had already cussed and sworn and ridiculed the two FWP officers for two + hours while we continued our float the remainder of the way down to my vehicle and then I refused to give them a ride back to their vehicle and trailer stationed up river, I told them they could walk the five extra miles to the boat ramp that we had passed along our journey, as my second vehicle was parked further downstream. The ranchers all along the river heard tell of our floating escapade and infraction, and they showed up on the river banks and bridge crossings to inform the FWP officers that they were refused to allow to step out of the high water mark of the river or pull their drift boat out of the river, if they had the ranchers would have arrested them for trespassing on private property and had the County Sheriff come and take custody of the FWP officers to the jail, whereas I was welcome to come out the high water mark onto the private property which we did to enjoy our packed lunch and cold beers and share a discussion with the ranch manager of the 120,000 acre ranch that the river passed through, all the while the FWP officers anchored their drift boat in the middle of the river. When back on the water I just kept floating ahead of them, told them I would stop when we got to the river access ramp ten miles downstream from whence we had started where my second shuttle vehicle was located, and if they wanted to ticket me they could when we got to the public access point because my wallet, ID and car keys were in the car. We were just wearing swimsuits and water shoes, didn't even have towels. It was a very contentious outing for them as everyone on the river was cussing them out and not giving way to allow them to pass, so they just kept falling further and further behind us in our inflatable raft. The wade fisherpersons would wave to us to pass ahead of them and then kept casting their fly lines on the deep water so as to cause the FWP to have to hold their drift boat in station in the stream above the fisherperson, sometimes for many minutes, and / or the FWP officers would have to resort to drag their heavy fiberglass drift boat through the rocky shallows or over the sandbars behind the fisherpersons, so as to not disturb the fly fisherpersons. Not a lot of love for the FWP. Quite a few call outs of 3-7-77 made to them as they passed by. That is the Vigilante Code, of the vigilantes that hung Sheriff Plummer, which Territorial Sheriff turned out to be the head of the group of highwaymen that were robbing and murdering the miners long before Montana was granted Statehood. To this day, the State Marshalls and the State Highway Patrol officers emblem and badges all have the 3-7-77 code displayed, in honor of the vigilante justice. 3-7-77 either spoken or written is a meaningful statement of warning and threat in Montana.
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