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Old 17 September 2013, 12:44   #111
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The other end a key ring/lanyard attachment - one to use for sure to ensure its not dropped over the side never to be seen again. ( note to self - get some decent lanyards for radio/ PLB / laser flare! ) Iím surprised Greatland donít include one - but then again you donít have lanyard on personal flares either)

What about this? BLACK RECOIL RETRACTABLE KEY CHAIN RING WITH BELT CLIP: Amazon.co.uk: Office Products It even matches the suit...
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Old 17 September 2013, 15:02   #112
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Handy things — I kept my safety knife on one (a Draper one, I think). It only lasted a season, though. I forget which part failed, but it was rust that killed it.
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Old 23 September 2013, 17:09   #113
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Hi All

Not sure if I've missed something here, and I've not used a laser flare (but looked at the boat show) but while they for sure they can do *some* of what a smoke flare does, I can't see how they would have the height advantage a parachute flare does... (unless there's a parachute laser).

In other words, the light source will be no higher than you are on the boat, so of limited use if you are, eg, close to a cliff or behind a low island where VHF and mobile coverage may be poor too.

Clearly there are some laser characteristics that could be as good and in *some* cases better than pyrotechnic flares, but I'm just a tad concerned that comparisons here may at times have with been with some "generic" pyrotechnic flare, overlooking some key characteristics of, eg , a parachute flare (eg height) that are not provided by a laser flare.

I found this video really helpful in illustrating the differences:

Distress Flares & Signals Pt 2 - YouTube

Actually part 1 (introduction) is helpful too - and includes a RIB!

Distress Flares & Signals Pt1 - YouTube

I can see the value in carrying a laser flare in addition to pyrotechnic flares, but really can't at present see why one would not carry traditional flares especially a parachute type.

My 2p worth...

Steve
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Old 23 September 2013, 17:14   #114
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I've never actually carried a para flare on my own boat .....

Maybe a valid point for over the horizon rescue, but I think has been made clear laser flares are a PLB/DSC addition for the last mile of finding me.
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Old 23 September 2013, 17:18   #115
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Hi All

Not sure if I've missed something here...
Steve
Yes you have ! I have not once stated the Greatland Rescue Laser Flare is a replacement for Parachute Flares...or that Greatland Rescue Laser Flare are a primary means of distress.

They ARE to aid rescuers to find you after another means of distress - PLB/EPIRB/VHF or dreaded mobile phone.

regards

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Old 23 September 2013, 17:43   #116
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I've never actually carried a para flare on my own boat .....

Maybe a valid point for over the horizon rescue, but I think has been made clear laser flares are a PLB/DSC addition for the last mile of finding me.
In that context with you 100% Peter M, but if we look back at this thread, some contributors are taking the application much further than that and - worryingly in my view - suggesting that they would not carry pyro flares if they had a laser.

I'd also reiterate my point re base of cliffs too... An "over the horizon" incident doesn't need to be far out at sea.

If we are talking laser flares as *complementary* that seems fine, but as an alternative... I'd not bet my life on it, which is what we may be talking about here.

Cheers

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Old 23 September 2013, 17:59   #117
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Gone are the days when we had a fulltime overlapping Coastguard service covering the coastline of the UK, there is no man with the big binoculars looking out over the sea anymore. Despite the Colregs, many commercial vessels don't keep a permanent lookout on the bridge, they increasingly rely on electronic means to "keep watch". If I was in the deep brown stuff, I wouldn't want to think that my only hope was a 45sec untested firework that someone might see AND take some action. What I want to do is press a button that squawks every ship in VHF range & wakes up the lookout, & deploy the PLB that lights up the bods in Falmouth. The DSC call should get me a response & at least I know the cavalry is on its way, you don't get that with a flare. The PLB will be constantly transmitting my position which will be picked up by each pass of the satellite + it will be sending a 121mhz homing signal.
A laser flare would be the icing on the cake, not the primary means of summoning help. IMHO pyrotechnics have had their day, they are expensive, untestable, potentially dangerous, a PITA to get rid of, transient in operation, you have to surrender them at the ferry as they are classed as offensive weapons (they let me keep the kitchen knives ) AND the bloody French fine you if they are out of date
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Old 23 September 2013, 17:59   #118
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Yes you have ! I have not once stated the Greatland Rescue Laser Flare is a replacement for Parachute Flares...or that Greatland Rescue Laser Flare are a primary means of distress.


S.
Hmmmm - from what you say SPR, I also missed where I said that you, personally, "stated the Greatland Rescue Laser Flare is a replacement for Parachute Flares" - perhaps you could point me to where I did that (using a laser or pyrotechnic flare!)

The issue for me here is the comments made by people who are talking in a wider usage context.

I appreciate that you may be especially sensitive as seemingly one of the vendors of such items, but my priority here is ensuring people who are less well informed and potentially lured by the technology, are very clear about where their use may be helpful - or not And in a thread of some 12 pages, it is apparent - and understandable - there is some creep in where they can be useful. For example, people talking about avoiding the need for having explosives (ie pyro flares) on their boats.

Certainly I have thought seriously about getting a laser flare to use as PeterM suggests, but for anyone to buy one before having an appropriate set of pyro flares is, to me, foolish.

I'd love to do away with my pyro flares as they are a PITA to have here for several reasons (eg ferry crossings, disposal when expire), so very keen to encourage any developments that will remove those issues.

Cheers

Steve
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Old 23 September 2013, 18:21   #119
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The DSC call should get me a response & at least I know the cavalry is on its way, you don't get that with a flare. The PLB will be constantly transmitting my position which will be picked up by each pass of the satellite + it will be sending a 121mhz homing signal.
A laser flare would be the icing on the cake, not the primary means of summoning help. IMHO pyrotechnics have had their day, they are expensive, untestable, potentially dangerous, a PITA to get rid of, transient in operation, you have to surrender them at the ferry as they are classed as offensive weapons (they let me keep the kitchen knives ) AND the bloody French fine you if they are out of date
While a big fan of DSC and indeed AIS (both of which I have) VHF coverage is very poor here in many places (as is mobile phone too- not sure where you boat) and also limited if your boat has capsized. While my lifejacket attached DSC handheld with hopefully still work, at 6w output still can be limited.

For sure a PLB great to have on your person (top priority for me - esp now legal to use on land too - I take it when out horse riding in the hills alone) as usually we have some view of the sky / satellites and the 406Mhz beacons with GPS data have speeded up location finding greatly.

I just like having a backup and even as a Yorkshireman living in Scotland, I'm happy to spend £80 or so and put up with some hassle for a set of six flares (in my grab bag) for the time they are really needed.

And I don't think anyone is suggesting that "my only hope was a 45sec untested firework" is a sensible position to be in either.

Steve
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Old 23 September 2013, 18:21   #120
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no offence was meant - I like yourself want to make sure that there is no doubt - hence I state in simple terms - to re-enforce they are not a replacement for parachutes flares.

I am now the sole importer of these in UK & Ireland...so want to make sure everybody knows the limitations.


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