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Old 02-22-2018, 10:54 AM   #1
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Thumbs up A PFD Can't Save You If You Refuse to Wear Them

Pacific Northwest Boating News: After busy weekend, USCG urges use of lifesaving equipment | Three Sheets Northwest
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Old 02-22-2018, 01:16 PM   #2
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Well, your article mentions two boats with no lifejackets on board, then the male who fell into the water, but no mention of a boat. Then there's the 13' with the two not wearing life jackets, but that one gets odd as they found the missing person deceased on land. You seem to have a lot of weird stuff going on up there.
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Old 02-22-2018, 11:51 PM   #3
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We live a couple hundred miles up the Columbia from where ASD lives and we lose a fisherman or two every winter/spring. They usually fall off the boat due to inclement weather and huge waves on the river or the fall off while moving around the boat.


Life jackets? We don't wear no stinkin' life jackets.
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Old 02-23-2018, 11:25 AM   #4
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I bet if you look at the statistics, those who are rescued are wearing a PFD and those who lost their lives were not wearing a PFD.


So why do those who cruise with bigger boats like TFs, refuse to wear a PFD knowing full well that by wearing one, increases your chances of survival by many many factors?

BTW when ASD is underway, everyone on board has a PFD on.
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Old 02-23-2018, 11:34 AM   #5
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many things increase your chance of survival, PFDs are just the last resort....

same can be said in many walks of life...

how many carry resucitators in their car?

how many drive with the electrodes already on their chests?

risk managent is an approach...not an absolute.
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Old 02-23-2018, 11:43 AM   #6
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Psneeld, you strengthen my point.


I know the wearing of a PFD is like being required to wear a seat belt or wearing a helmet on a motorcycle. Some say invasion of privacy.


All maybe true, until you hit something or something hits you and your boat goes down very quickly. Too late to be digging for PFDs that are in a cabinet near the engine room, behind all the junk that has gathered over the years.


I don't understand why....
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Old 02-23-2018, 11:58 AM   #7
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Psneeld, you strengthen my point.


I know the wearing of a PFD is like being required to wear a seat belt or wearing a helmet on a motorcycle. Some say invasion of privacy.


All maybe true, until you hit something or something hits you and your boat goes down very quickly. Too late to be digging for PFDs that are in a cabinet near the engine room, behind all the junk that has gathered over the years.


I don't understand why....
No, it's nothing like a seat belt or helmet. Here are some significant differences:

-You move around on boats. May be inside or out, up or down, fore or aft. All have different risks.
-Huge variety of boats, from 6' inflatables to cruise ships, with different risks.
-Varying conditions from calm to rough to hurricane and water from warm to ice.
-Risk impacted by age, experience, swimming ability, and activities.

We keep PFD's readily accessible and their locations known to all, not buried near the engine room. We wear them selectively. All children wear them full time, including on docks before boarding boat. Captain will require them if sea conditions warrant. We wear on RIB when we aren't wearing on main boat. We wore more in Alaska than we do in the Bahamas.
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Old 02-23-2018, 12:07 PM   #8
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From the USCG 2016 Study (highlighting some interesting data points):

In 2016, the Coast Guard counted 4,463 accidents that involved 701 deaths, 2,903 injuries and approximately $49 million dollars of damage to property as a result of recreational boating accidents.
  • The fatality rate was 5.9 deaths per 100,000 registered recreational vessels.
  • This rate represents a 11.3% increase from last year’s fatality rate of 5.3
    deaths per 100,000 registered recreational vessels.
  • Compared to 2015, the number of accidents increased 7.3%, the number of
    deaths increased 12%, and the number of injuries increased 11.1%.
  • Where cause of death was known, 80% of fatal boating accident victims drowned. Of those drowning victims with reported life jacket usage, 83% were not wearing a life jacket.
  • Eight out of every ten boaters who drowned were using vessels less than 21 feet in length.
  • Alcohol use is the leading known contributing factor in fatal boating accidents; where the primary cause was known, it was listed as the leading factor in 15% of deaths.
  • Where instruction was known, 77% of deaths occurred on boats where the operator did not receive boating safety instruction. Only 13% percent of deaths occurred on vessels where the operator had received a nationally-approved boating safety education certificate.
  • There were 171 accidents in which at least one person was struck by a propeller.
  • Collectively, these accidents resulted in 24 deaths and 175 injuries.
  • Operator inattention, operator inexperience, improper lookout, excessive speed, and machinery failure rank as the top five primary contributing factors in accidents.
  • Where data was known, the most common vessel types involved in reported
    accidents were open motorboats (47%), personal watercraft (18%), and cabin
    motorboats (15%).
  • Where data was known, the vessel types with the highest percentage of deaths were open motorboats (47%), kayaks (13%), and canoes (9%).
  • The 11,861,811 recreational vessels registered by the states in 2016 represent a 0.04% decrease
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Old 02-23-2018, 12:17 PM   #9
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In 2016, there were 701 boating fatalities. Here’s the break down by boat length.

Less than 16’ 297
16’ to <26’ 283
26’ to <40’ 56
40’ to <65’ 6
more than 65’ 0
Unknown 59

https://www.uscgboating.org/library/...stics-2016.pdf
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Old 02-23-2018, 12:34 PM   #10
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All children wear them full time, including on docks before boarding boat.
So why just children? Airstream's (USCG) stats speak for themselves.
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Old 02-23-2018, 12:56 PM   #11
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I remember from the WA State Boater's Test that a majority of MOB incidents on vessels was related to (ahem) not using the proper head.

I'm betting there is a strong correlation between drinking on small boats and not using the head that's located below decks.
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Old 02-23-2018, 01:04 PM   #12
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So why just children? Airstream's (USCG) stats speak for themselves.
As do Larry's, so as long as we stay in a boat over 65', then we have zero risk?

Why children? Because they're the ones most likely to lean or step somewhere they shouldn't or to somehow get out of sight, regardless of the safeguards we take. Us having them wear them is a protection against falling in the water. As to protecting against accidents and rough seas we don't feel the need to do so under most conditions.

The vast majority of drownings have nothing to do with multi-boat accidents, but with small boats capsizing or people falling out.

In sinkings at sea one has time and we keep life jackets and rafts very convenient and easy to access.

8 of 10 involved boats under 21'. We require everyone to wear one when on a boat under 21'.
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Old 02-23-2018, 01:05 PM   #13
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I remember from the WA State Boater's Test that a majority of MOB incidents on vessels was related to (ahem) not using the proper head.

I'm betting there is a strong correlation between drinking on small boats and not using the head that's located below decks.
Well, we don't pee over the side of the boat and we don't consume alcohol while boating or allow it's consumption.
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Old 02-23-2018, 01:40 PM   #14
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comparing boats to cars, motorcycles and airplane shows complete disconnect.

if planes, cars, and motorcycles went at 6 knots and didnt drive in lanes only 10 feet wide, and you always picked the time of travel....then the comparison might have a teeny tiny resemblance.

plus what are the accident or fatality stats for every 100 hours in a car versus a boat of the type we normally boat in....

plus I think most people who dont wear them 100 percent of the time, probably will put it on in higher risk times. Yes that judgement comes from experience, so like a lot of advice, a newbie should probably listen to everyone including the USCG and wear one all the time. Others that know higher risk times can still miitigate needing one till abandoning ship.

nope, didnt strengthen anyones point but my own....and in this case dont follow my lead any more than a teen driver should listen to million mile drivers and do everything they do.

but mandatory or full time wear is in my mind overreaching.
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Old 02-23-2018, 03:30 PM   #15
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They are ready to go, and guests know where they are and how to put them on. Kids of course wear them. Me, nope, and never will unless the situation calls for it. Risk management: driving safely in my car, careful walking down the stairs, and avoid foods that will clog my heart. Those are things that will do you in if not properly managed.
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Old 02-23-2018, 07:34 PM   #16
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We don't wear PFD's on the boat unless we're transiting one of the locks; they're mandatory if you are outside the cabin while in the lock. When we were doing charity cruises we occasionally went through the locks with them and required they wear PFD's while we were inside the lock whether they were inside the cabin or not.
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Old 02-23-2018, 08:34 PM   #17
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PFDs on when working on deck in low vis/light or wx conditions that could cause a loss of footing.

Interesting note about the "code" here in Washington State:

RCW 79A.60.160
Personal flotation devices required—Penalty.
(1) No person may operate or permit the operation of a vessel on the waters of the state without a personal flotation device on board for each person on the vessel. Each personal flotation device shall be in serviceable condition, of an appropriate size, and readily accessible.

(2) Except as provided in RCW 79A.60.020, a violation of subsection (1) of this section is an infraction under chapter 7.84 RCW if the vessel is not carrying passengers for hire.

(3) A violation of subsection (1) of this section is a misdemeanor punishable under RCW 9.92.030, if the vessel is carrying passengers for hire.

(4) No person shall operate a vessel under nineteen feet in length on the waters of this state with a child twelve years old and under, unless the child is wearing a personal flotation device that meets or exceeds the United States coast guard approval standards of the appropriate size, while the vessel is underway. For the purposes of this section, a personal flotation device is not considered readily accessible for children twelve years old and under unless the device is worn by the child while the vessel is underway. The personal flotation device must be worn at all times by a child twelve years old and under whenever the vessel is underway and the child is on an open deck or open cockpit of the vessel. The following circumstances are excepted:

(a) While a child is below deck or in the cabin of a boat with an enclosed cabin;

(b) While a child is on a United States coast guard inspected passenger-carrying vessel operating on the navigable waters of the United States; or

(c) While on board a vessel at a time and place where no person would reasonably expect a danger of drowning to occur.


(5) Except as provided in RCW 79A.60.020, a violation of subsection (4) of this section is an infraction under chapter 7.84 RCW. Enforcement of subsection (4) of this section by law enforcement officers may be accomplished as a primary action, and need not be accompanied by the suspected violation of some other offense.
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Old 02-23-2018, 08:43 PM   #18
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So why just children? Airstream's (USCG) stats speak for themselves.
This is exactly what I say to my wife when we are locking through... May looks like simple, easy going summer time, but if you slip, fell between the hull and lock wall and have the bad luck of hitting your head... Things happen and better worry than be sorry.
I work in a domain where first you learn is that the most minor mistake can be deadly, you may think this will never happen, but when you see it for real, lesson learned.

L
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Old 02-23-2018, 08:46 PM   #19
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This is exactly what I say to my wife when we are locking through... May looks like simple, easy going summer time, but if you slip, fell between the hull and lock wall and have the bad luck of hitting your head... Things happen and better worry than be sorry.
I work in a domain where first you learn is that the most minor mistake can be deadly, you may think this will never happen, but when you see it for real, lesson learned.

L
Well, it's standard for locks to require them to be worn.
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Old 02-23-2018, 08:51 PM   #20
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As I was getting my butt kicked last Saturday between Kingston and Edmonds, I heard several CG pan pan calls. I was glad that none were near me as I wasn’t in much of a position to be helpful.

I was not wearing my PFD. However, I had my Mustang Survival Jacket at hand, literally on the back of my helm seat. My wife was huddled in the salon with her PFD next to her on the salon settee. Anytime we were outside of the salon or pilothouse we were wearing our respective PFDs.

I don’t think it is necessary to wear my PFD inside the boat when underway, but don’t fault ASD for doing so.
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