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Old 02-12-2010, 09:34 PM   #1
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Ditch Bag

We are getting things prepared for an upcoming trip (Coastal Cruising) and I believe it is time to put together a "Ditch Bag". I would love some different input on how big is enough, should it include Spam and a handheld GPS, what safety gear to put in, etc.. We tow our dink- does that change what you put in there? Thanks in advance.
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Old 02-13-2010, 04:28 AM   #2
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RE: Ditch Bag

For coastal cruising the ditch bag would NOT be survival gear tho a hand held VHF and GPS might be usefull.

Mostly it should contain papers , documents , passport the jewelery and what ever you would be hard pressed to replace.

It should really be a "grab bag" as a fire would give the shortest evacuation time.
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Old 02-13-2010, 06:06 AM   #3
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RE: Ditch Bag

Well I tried; the site said it was too long. I'll e-mail it to you Forkliftt
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Old 02-13-2010, 11:34 AM   #4
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RE: Ditch Bag

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FF wrote:

For coastal cruising the ditch bag would NOT be survival gear tho a hand held VHF and GPS might be usefull.

Our ABANDON SHIP KIT contains materials for survival no matter what reason we are forced to leave the boat, or where that may be.* Planning a kit with the thought in mind that you are only in coastal waters,in my mind is the same as saying, I don't need lifejackets because the water is warm, and I can swim to an island.* Plan for the worst, and be happy if you have un-needed stuff after it's over. Some of the materials* we have in our kit include EPIRB, flares, water, VHF, space blanket, flashlight, headlight, canned smoke, comapass, fishing kit, liferaft repair kit,energy bars, waterproof matches,and lighter, candles, bug repellent, knife,* sun block, sea sickness pills, warm hats, first aid kit, signal mirror, whistle, strobe light (very important) nylon cord, a survival manual and more that I can't remember at the moment.* We have survival suits for ALL aboard (easily accessible), and practice putting them on at the beginning of each training cruise.

If you do have to abandon ship, get off a May Day call with your GPS location, and in addition to your abandon ship kit, try to take things with you that will make you BIGGER, BRIGHTER AND DIFFERENT looking* A person in the water is almost impossible to see from the air or another boat.* A bunch of orange fenders tied together will make you much easier to spot. In addition, gather anything that floats, and try to tie it together to make you look bigger and different.* Save your pyrotechnics until you are sure someone might see them.* Be careful with flares that can drip hot slag, and melt life raft or inflatable boat materials. Most importantly, don't give up, the will to survive can be the difference between survival or not.* ...............Arctic Traveller

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Old 02-14-2010, 04:05 AM   #5
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RE: Ditch Bag

Of course the cruising area makes all the difference.

While there are loads of isolated places in Alaska ,

the chances of not being seen while beaching a boat on the AICW , literally some folks back yard is rather remote.

Long shore or offshore ditching IS a concern , our solution when offshore passagemaking is a Grumman sailing dink , and survival suits.

Were set to sail to help , or at least to the shipping lanes , rather than just wait for Russian electronics to save the day.
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Old 02-14-2010, 11:06 PM   #6
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RE: Ditch Bag

One thing to remember no matter what you put in a ditch bag--- and we have one--- is a reliable and easy means of attaching the bag to the dinghy or life raft. The bag and its contents won't do you any good if in the process of getting into whatever you're using for a lifeboat, the bag falls overboard, or later gets bounced out of the boat in rough water or if the boat actually turns over.
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Old 02-15-2010, 07:03 PM   #7
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RE: Ditch Bag

Thanks for all of the informative replies!!
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Old 02-15-2010, 07:23 PM   #8
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RE: Ditch Bag

Took two coasties on a day sail many years ago, since they were from Clearwater and were the guys that went out on the search/rescue mission I asked what one piece of gear they would recommend - they both replied in stereo 'a mirrior' 'or 'something that would reflect'.


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Old 02-15-2010, 07:51 PM   #9
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RE: Ditch Bag

Quote:
El Sea wrote:

Took two coasties on a day sail many years ago, since they were from Clearwater and were the guys that went out on the search/rescue mission I asked what one piece of gear they would recommend - they both replied in stereo 'a mirrior' 'or 'something that would reflect'.


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Excellent information, mirrors are very inexpensive too. Read the directions provided with the mirror, and practice aiming, perhaps working with another boat. I recently attended a seminar on survival at sea, and they used several real life examples of what to do and not to do.* One thing mentioned several times was the use of strobe lights.* In the sinking of one large processor in Alaska, where there were a lot of people in the water, those without strobes made every possible effort to get to those that had them as it was clear those folks would be found first.* The Coast Guard reported that the strobes were visible for several miles at night, where as those with only water lights, or none at all were nearly impossible to see.* We have strobes in our Ditch Kit, on survival suits, and on our life jackets. Gotta remember to change the batteries next month.* .....Arctic Traveller

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Old 02-15-2010, 07:57 PM   #10
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RE: Ditch Bag

I found these. Is this what you recommend?
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Old 02-15-2010, 08:08 PM   #11
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Ditch Bag

Quote:
Forkliftt wrote:

I found these. Is this what you recommend?
I've never seen those, but if it is a true strobe (one with a flash tube like your cameras flash) then as long as it is easy to attach to your lifejacket, or survival suit, with the tube pointing up it should be fine.* Still, the photo looks more like a simple light to me.** In addition, add some SOLAS grade reflective tape to your lifejackets. Try going to www.fisheriessupply.com and search using the word strobe.....Arctic Traveller

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-- Edited by Arctic Traveller on Monday 15th of February 2010 09:25:28 PM
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