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Old 23 September 2002, 06:17   #1
Country: UK - England
Make: Ribcraft 6.5
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Engine: Suzuki DF175TG
Join Date: Apr 2002
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Those all important flares

I'm sure there has been a thread about this before but i can't find it, so here goes

What flares do you all carry and how many of them?

I have been looking at buying one of these coastal packs with 4 flares (2 rockets and 2 smokes) but 4 doesn't seem that much. At the moment I just have a mini flare pack so I guess that and a coastal pack would be ok?

Would it be worth buying another rocket and smoke to add to the coastal pack? Oh, and what about the offshore pack with two parachute flares?


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Old 23 September 2002, 06:59   #2
Country: Greece
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The law here says that we shall carry at least 3 flares and 1 smoke generator. I always carry twice as that. (6 flares + 2 smoke gen).

Michael a.k.a "Bat Falcon"

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Old 23 September 2002, 07:35   #3
Country: UK - England
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My answer is to have as many as you can, as can be seen by Charles' problem you never know when and how many you may need.

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Old 23 September 2002, 09:32   #4
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Smoke it up!!

I am of the opinion that 4 hand-held flares and two parachute flares (3000ft) should suffice. It should also be understood that I only used the flares once I was sure someone would see the smoke once fired. It is a pointless exercise just firing them willy-nilly and when you do need them you have none left. They do really work well, mine burnt for almost two minutes with the entire area covered in orange smoke.
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Old 23 September 2002, 11:10   #5
Country: UK - England
Town: Margate / Ramsgate
Boat name: Ballistic
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I carry the same 6 as charles sugests plus 2 white collision flares - i had a lot of trouble getting them recently (old ones out of date), no body can do mail order now apparently because of new rules - went to a chandlery in the end who charged a premium and were an hours drive away.

Remember - there are things to think about...

Don't fire flares with a helicopter nearby
Think about wind direction
I think it is illegal to fire any flare other than a white collision avoidance unless in a mayday situation. If it isn't it should be. You can fire white flares to avoid collisions - that's wot they are for.

Daniel (the second)
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Old 23 September 2002, 12:02   #6
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Country: UK - Isle of Man
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Disposal of old, out of date flares.

What does one do?
Obviously DO NOT set them off-ANYWHERE.
But what? Take them back to.......any chandlery? Where?
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Old 23 September 2002, 12:06   #7
Country: UK - England
Town: Margate / Ramsgate
Boat name: Ballistic
Make: Ballistic
Length: 7m +
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Strangely i asked the lifeboat - they said keep them as extras! So i did, but, at the moment they are 6 months out of date - what happens in a few years i have no idea!

The guy also said they will still work for a while, but just not burn so brightly or be slightly discoloured or not reach quite as high.

Sounds reasonable - but i have reservations about the things going off in my face???
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Old 23 September 2002, 12:38   #8
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Ahah! Good old google...

(search on "disposal of flares")

"The question of what to do with those out of date Flares is one which faces all boat owners from time to time....So Here Is The Answer! ...Bring them to any Coastguard Station and we will arrange for their safe and proper disposal. Please ring beforehand if you are traveling any distance to ensure the Auxiliary Coastguard Station will be open. Beer Coastguard's Telephone number is 01297 21814 Click Here to see a map of where we are located."

Well, that's OK if you live near Beer!

Lots of other links too. Enjoy
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Old 23 September 2002, 12:44   #9
Country: UK - England
Town: Saltash, Cornwall
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Flares and smokes

The coastguard I talked to said keep them as spares, but ....
The rocket ones use a spring to launch the rocket body out of the tube - this becomes week over time thus rocket starts in tube - so you might not want to be holding it
From previous practices(remember to get permision from the coastguard) pin points and smokes work for a while (remember to be up wind or you are Tango man!), mini flares either work, make loud band and no colours or don't.
But what do you do with a flare you have fired but has failed to work - ie a mis fire ? deep 6 it? I wouldn't want it anymore.
Any ideas?
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Old 23 September 2002, 12:59   #10
Country: Ireland
Town: Dublin
Boat name: WIZARD
Make: REDBAY 7.4
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Engine: OPTI 225
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 417
What flares to carry?????

Carry extra white colision flares, as most ships dont bother to keep a look out outside the English channel, In my Experance(offshore sailing) they dont even listen to the VHF.So when they dont see the first white flare, fire them at the bridge, that usually wakes them up!!!! I have had to do this 4 times, once near Belfast and the other 3 times in the Caribbean. Its defiantly saved the boat on two occasions......and possiably lives.

I know poeple are going to say , thats crazy and dangerious and all that but, when you have had the experance of very nearly run down, you decide that they are better equipped for fires that you are for swimming.... not that it ever started one. Its just a big splash of white , a bit like a roman candle, followed by a dozen heads looking out windows.

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