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Old 23 May 2018, 19:30   #1
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Safe seating arrangements and capacity underway

So recently reading a thread on a Facebook page about dangers involved in riding on the seats fwd of the console, I'd like to know what the best practice is for seating passengers while underway?

I'm wanting to buy a RIB as a dive boat, and was attracted to the increased passenger capacity compared to a similarly sized normal boat. But if I'm getting a 5m-5.5m RIB with a rated capacity of 9, but the only seating rear of the console is the console seating and a rear bench, should I only be realistically carrying 4-5 people? Or do people also sit on the tubes in the rear of the boat? I kind of pictured being able to have 2 people on the fwd seats, 2 at the console on jockeys, and 2-3 people on a rear bench.

It's not like I'm going to be using the boat for hooning around (at least with that many people in it), it's going to be for getting from point A to point B in the fastest most comfortable manner.
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Old 24 May 2018, 01:21   #2
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The maximum rated carrying capacity of a RIB is deceptive. Yes you can hypothetically carry the permitted number of people, but the boat will be fully laden, impractical in anything but flat calm conditions, and you need to determine how exactly they'll be seated while underway and how you actually move about the boat if you need to get to the engine for example.

The suicide seat as it's referred to in front of the console is a good example. The person sitting there will have no hand holds using only their feet to brace themselves, they're open to the elements too, especially if you stuff the bow in a following sea.

On a 5.5 to 5.85m RIB, then if it's possible to have 4 jockey seats (2 side by side) with wingback wrap around seat supports and hand holds. A 6m rib you can add a rear bench which needs to be lower than the surrounding tubes (in my opinion) and be well padded, with hand holds or grab handles on the tubes.

Ribeye' A600 is a good example (minus wingback seats), and look to carry 7 maximum for sightseeing. If it was a dive boat, then 4-5 plus your kit.

The rear bench could be dispensed with and add a stainless steel cylinder rack.

Ribcraft 5.85 shows wingback seats.
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Old 24 May 2018, 06:19   #3
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As the above reply the rated capacity and the number of practical seats are often very different, especially in a dive boat where you need tank space.

The reality of most dive RIBs is that most only have one or two seats and everyone else does sit on the tubes. Is this ideal? Absolutely not, but it is the practical methods used by commercial and dive club RIBs all over the world.

If you do go down the route of sitting people on the tubes you have to think carefully about what they will hold onto. Anything on the tubes themselves (handles, lifelines, etc) are totally worthless since they won't stop you falling out of the boat. Every expected seating position needs to have a solid handhold placed inboard of it for the passenger to hold onto. Also think about how the coxswain and any other crew would move around the boat quickly if they needed to - it's easy to fill a dive RIB to the point where no-one can pass anyone else until your first pair is in the water.

The boat I've operated most often in a RibCraft 6.5 with 2 pod seats. We used to routinely run that as 10 divers plus 2 crew. essentially most often transit to/from the site involved four people sitting on each tube and two standing aft of the back of the tank rack. Every position had access to several steel grab handles that were designed with the seating layout in mind.

If the whether was unpleasant or were were going further away we would cut down the number of divers to 8 or 6, but if the weather is bad you aren't diving so generally the diving stops before the boating becomes an issue.
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Old 24 May 2018, 06:40   #4
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I find any more than 4 divers plus cox in our 5.3 to be impractical. I have a single console with a tank rack behind and take divers on the tubes (handholds on tank rack and console). It will carry 6 divers but kit takes up so much space that the area in front of the console is filled with bags, there are tanks and wings everywhere and there is no room to move or kit up. With 4 divers, it's a lot easier and you have a little room to move. This is UK diving though with everybody in drysuits with tons of kit, twin tanks often and some spare tanks. I believe the boat is rated to 9 or 12 people, but that would really not work at all.

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Old 24 May 2018, 09:08   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Penguinator View Post
So recently reading a thread on a Facebook page about dangers involved in riding on the seats fwd of the console, .
thats a misnomer really, plenty of commercial trip boats have ALL the passengers forward of the console because then the helm can see them and knows what antics they are up to.

The issue as Spartacus says is sitting on seats with no hand hold in front of you. You might find this useful: https://assets.publishing.service.go...s_guidance.pdf

BUT that is really intended for (1) Passengers who have little or no experience (and cant be trusted to follow a simple briefing! (2) Boats where the thrill and speed are part of what people are paying for. On a dive rib it may be rather different; (a) people tend not to dive in really bouncy conditions (b) you may have more trust of your pax (c) positioning people on tubes where they will get wet and risk MOB may not be SO bad for divers v's the public (d) your objective is not for speed/trills.

However the crux of your question is really, can you effectively and safely have 9 people diving from a 5.5m rib. I think pretty much everyone will agree, no. I'd add to the above problems by saying IMHO a dive rib should be able to take a casualty lying down with space for someone treating them AND all the other crew/divers on board (with their kit) and still be able to get comfortably on the plane. Ideally it would have all that and enough space for a helo winchman to comfortably land without standing on anyone.
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Old 24 May 2018, 09:20   #6
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Chap off the Needles 3 or 4 summers ago had his son and a friend riding on the front tubes/bow of his boat and hit a large wave / wash, the son ended up getting killed by the RIB's outboard as the boat went over him....................
Most days on the Solent you see kids and adults sat with there legs dangling off the bow of a boat / RIB while the boats on the plane, sends shivers up my spine - needless to say my passengers have clear instruction where they can and can't sit whilst underway. Be Safe!


http://www.dailyecho.co.uk/news/1019...ting_accident/


Painful reading
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Old 26 May 2018, 22:43   #7
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Thanks for all the answers, sad to hear about all the accidents.

A few points I guess:

- I don't really do much SCUBA anymore, diving will generally be of the freediving variety. The only gear we will be worrying about will be fins, weights, and maybe a small bag for each of us. When we are nearing capacity on the boats we normally are wearing wet suits the entire time. I'm contemplating making a little fin basket to attach to the A frame so that we can get those out of the boat and make more room.

- Like a few mentioned, when we go diving it will be in generally in smoother conditions, so not really worried about heavy seas. When I'll be using the boat for thrills, it will probably be only a few of us.

- I'm not really expecting to push the rated capacity, but I would have liked to seat more people than there are actual seats. One of the RIBs I've been looking at is a Brig Nav 520. It would be nice to have two at the console, three on the rear bench, then if I wanted to squeeze in two more they could sit on the tubes behind the jockeys and hang on to the handles that are on the rear of the cockpit jockey seats. All gear could be up front?
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Old 27 May 2018, 01:14   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fender View Post
Chap off the Needles 3 or 4 summers ago had his son and a friend riding on the front tubes/bow of his boat and hit a large wave / wash, the son ended up getting killed by the RIB's outboard as the boat went over him....................
Most days on the Solent you see kids and adults sat with there legs dangling off the bow of a boat / RIB while the boats on the plane, sends shivers up my spine - needless to say my passengers have clear instruction where they can and can't sit whilst underway. Be Safe!


http://www.dailyecho.co.uk/news/1019...ting_accident/


Painful reading


How horrific!

I regularly let the kids ride on their knees on the bow cushion (not the tubes). I tie a line between the cleats to give them a hand hold. But I guess if the boat stopped dead in the water they too could feasibly go over the bow....

Trouble is itís the best bit if the rib to them.

I will alway have that newspaper article in my mind from now on.

Iím of to investigate prop guards.
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Old 27 May 2018, 04:26   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Striker View Post
How horrific!

I regularly let the kids ride on their knees on the bow cushion (not the tubes). I tie a line between the cleats to give them a hand hold. But I guess if the boat stopped dead in the water they too could feasibly go over the bow....

Trouble is itís the best bit if the rib to them.

I will alway have that newspaper article in my mind from now on.

Iím of to investigate prop guards.


Don't bother with prop guards, just prevent people entering the water unexpectedly in the first place. A prop guard will kill the engine, they have their place in specific circumstances.
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Old 27 May 2018, 06:32   #10
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But I guess if the boat stopped dead in the water they too could feasibly go over the bow....

...

Iím of to investigate prop guards.
If the boat stops dead in the water enough for them to be in the water they will:

- Possibly hit whatever stopped you
- Possibly hit by the hull
- NOT be hit by the engine because the boat won't go over them
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