It's happened to me. several years back now, I was about 19-20. out skiing one evening from our Dory. skier came out wide along side the boat on the whip, the line went slack then as the boat sped away the line suddenly went taught and the skier literally pulled the boat out from under me! I went straight over the side, I saw the shadow of the boat go over me and I surfaced to see the rope flying past my head!
The boat then locked into a tight turn like the rib and circled on full ahead.
fortunately, someone saw and called the lifeboat. we had the paramedics on the beach, the helicoptor from Portland, RNLI and about 15 other boats out for an evening jolly.
we were lucky in that it ran out of fuel after about 20 mins.
We had another boat with us who tried to lay a rope around the circling dory in the hope of fouling the prop but it stopped first.
I've learnt my lesson and NEVER go without the kill cord.....
Some years back I got pitched out of a rib I had, it had a leaning post versus a conventional boat seat, caught a large freak wave wrong and the boat went one way and I went another. I ALWAYS wear the lanyard for the kill switch and that is what saved my life. I don't always wear a life jacket and I wasn't that day and I was alone in the boat. I learned that day that years of experience don't necessarily prepare you for the "freak" situation. Anyhow the boat stopped about 100 to 150 feet away, there was a short chop ( 1-1 1/2 foot) and it was a bit breezy. I had to swim for it. The boat was moving away from me not quite as fast as I was swimming. I think I swam about four times farther than the greatest distance I had ever attempted that day. When I got halfway to it I was totally and I mean totally wiped out. It was at that point where panic started to set in. I think the only reason I made it was that my daughter was only 3 months old and I couldn't bear the thought of leaving her without a father at such a young age. I managed to Quell my rising panic/fear and focused on the back of the boat telling myself I would kill myself getting to it if I had to as if I didn't the result would be the same. There is no sense of dread quite like that of the situation where your life hangs in the balance, the outcome is completely uncertain and there is no one coming to the rescue! I focused on the back of the boat and gave everything I had covering the distance, pushing myself far far beyond anything I had ever done in terms of physical exertion and eventually grabbed the stern eye on the transom. I think if the boat had been two feet further from me when it originally stopped I would not be typing this today, it was that close. I do not remember pulling myself into the boat but I do remember throwing up three times as I was so nauseated from the exertion, I was so winded I was seeing big brown spots in front of my eyes and nearly passed out. It took about 35 minutes to recover from the exhaustion. Wear your lanyard, its a keeper.
One footnote, I still don't always wear a life jacket, the experience has not made me fearful of the water or anything like that, it just has made me more cautious in certain situations. It is my own choice not to wear one I go out, not the smartest thing but I accept the risk, just like the guy free climbing the mountain. The kids all have to wear them though.
IS there any way you can download or capture Youtube videos in WMV format or similar, to save on your pc? I'd like to keep that one just in case I need a lecturing tool as to the value of kill cords in the future...
A Boat is a hole in the water, surrounded by fibreglass, into which you throw money...
That brought back memories. Long time ago in my sailing days we were anchored in Tobermory bay when one of the local young bloods decided it would be fun to cruise among the group of anchored yachts and squirt sheets of spray all over the yotties in their cockpits.
He built up quite a sea, which eventually caught him out and on a tight turn close to us he was thrown out of his boat. The cheers died stillborn as the boat turned in quite a wide arc, missing all the anchored yachts and ran straight over the top of him.
He was being a complete prat and caused lots of anxiety and some damage among the yachts. Whether he deserved to have half his head chopped off I still don't know. It was the most horrible thing to witness and I still feel for his family. A friend of mine, a diver, finally recovered his body some days later.
Kill cords, lifejackets - and don't be a prat! Lessons I rammed home to my son before he was let loose on his own.