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Old 25 April 2003, 16:05   #1
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Wearing a lifejacket

I think most people would agree that something is better than nothing.

I was reading the article on peoples views on wearing a lifejacket and would like to hear some of yours.

Do you only wear one when it is a bit rough?

Do you wear an auto gas or manual lifejacket or one with foam in?

Also I have been studing for a talk I am giving on water rescue, I have been reading up on the medical side of drowning and came accross this statistic "the majority of drowning deaths following accidental immersion in open water below 15 degrees is within the first 3 minutes of entry" this fact has nothing to do with hypothermia!

Your views,

Mike
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Old 25 April 2003, 16:14   #2
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Mike all these toppics have been discussed in this forum.
Click on search and you'll find the answers you want
Cheers
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Old 25 April 2003, 16:14   #3
ozz
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Hi Mike,
I wear one all the time. I also prefer the auto inflate version.

My view is that if I go in and the water is 10 degrees, I am going to have enough of a job trying to breath let alone fiddle for some small toggle with gloves on while I sink to the bottom.

Fingers crossed haven't needed it yet!!

Graeme
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Old 25 April 2003, 17:11   #4
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ozz do you wear a survival suit with your lifejacket?
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Old 25 April 2003, 17:18   #5
ozz
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No, I try not to go out in anything too rough, just have waterproofs and so far that has been fine. Trouble I find is that when I take mates along they don't have the gear so it restricts you a bit. I might get some when I get some more experience and start going on longer trips.

As Manos says, there is a lot of stuff on here about life jackets etc - well worth having a trawl through.
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Old 26 April 2003, 06:01   #6
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I wear a wet suit and a life jacket all the time. unless i am just bobbing up and down a river.
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Old 26 April 2003, 06:26   #7
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I wear a gas life jacket whenever out on the boat and you dont get in myboat unless you are wearing a bouyancy aid/ jacket of the right type, in good condition and worn correctly.

That is:
a. zipped up buoyancy aid with knot or clip used if available
b. with the webbing correctly fitting so that you can get 2-3 fingers through the waist. as tight as you can be comfortably.
If its loose it could go over your head when you wave your arms for help! (do a pool sesion sea servival course to fing out what works)

I use a manual as I dont want it to go off acidentally when driving, and therefore accept the higher risks.

If your buying kit for the less experianced and passengers I would recomend an automatic. They have improved since I bought mine.

If you can get an auto with a spray hood its worth it, as it stops the water jumping down your throat as you lie in a way that the water hits you in the face (you can read up on that somewhere i'm sure)

As for the cold, well you need to get through the first 10 -30 seconds of cold shock,
I don't know the whole science. its not hyperthermia, (that takes a bit of time, its exposure), with cold shock you hyperventerlate as your body automatically tries to warm you by shivering and cutting non core functions and the body needs oxygen so you then can drink lots of water as you dont have much control. Its apparently what kill most people at sea. Certainly in the war and back to the Titanic they knew that.

As a side line, a friend on expedition near glaciers and ice bergs told his group that if they spent 4 mins in the water they would prob be dead, but thats glacier run off at just above 0c and not many people get to do that.

Tiger
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Old 26 April 2003, 14:15   #8
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I always wear a lifejacket and as I am likely to enter the water at speed I decided on a Auto. I also attach my kill cord to it.

Nobody gets on my boat without an LJ and I carry enough for all the seats. Don't buy secondhand ones.
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Old 26 April 2003, 15:00   #9
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Same here - auto inflating lifejackets for me and one other, and we have buoyancy aids for any additional crew that we may carry.

The kill cord gets attached to the harness on my lifejacket, and I carry a second kill cord too, just incase I go over and take the main one with me, which would render the boat useless if there was crew with me and wanted to get back to get me out

-Alex
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Old 26 April 2003, 15:18   #10
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L J

Finally got round to purchasing following life jacket

http://www.aladdinscave.co.uk/main/p...eanpassage.htm

Made by crewsaver , has Hammar auto inflation , internal harness, light and most importantly I think is a spray hood.

I also think a drysuit is a must in colder conditions to protect you from initial shock , so I now need to think about buying one but they are somewhat more expensive. Forking out 300 quid for something I will use infrequently can be hard to justify.
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Old 26 April 2003, 18:13   #11
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Tip of the day... Don't wear an auto jacket on a rescue boat. Funniest thing I ever saw was a guy in a drysuit (holding to much air) dive into the water beside an upturned raceboat to try and get the crew out. They were fine and after collecting their thoughts and breath swam out surfacing either side of a pair of ballooned legs trying to swim down. Then the jacket went off and the rescuer cracked his head on the gunnel of the upturned boat as he was flipped upright. I suppose that as it was it was funny, but it could have ended otherwise. An auto jacket will not help against the first impulsive breath when you hit the water, it's not fast enough also it won't help whilst trying to get out of an upturned boat, but a manual one is no good if you are unconscious or not able to pull the toggle. you pays your money you takes your choice. Of the two people I knew personaly that drowned one was wearing a buoyancy aid which actually caught in the rigging of an upturned boat and held her underwater in an estuary about 200yards from my parents house. I watched the attempted rescue from the front room. The other was pulled over the side by crabbing tackel so I don't think any jacket would have helped. Who was right? I don't know. Personally I wear a manual jacket for safety work, even on the pontoon. Or a big full blown buoyancy jacket for racing. As for drysuits when it's cold,,,,, I go down the pub. Just my personal views you understand.
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Old 27 April 2003, 05:50   #12
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If anybody is interested:

Cold shock is a a nasty physical reaction to a person entering water below 25C. A survival suit (any type) can reduce the effects but most people have not tested the suit and there lifjackets, helmets together.

I was involved in a lifejacket trial with the RLNI when they were changing to the geko helmet. When you enter the water the Lifejacket needs to fit correctly or it will ride up, if it does this it could restrict the airway and obstruct the helmet.

Also many people have died because they could not get their hood over their helmet so left it off.

Mike
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Old 27 April 2003, 11:58   #13
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Life jackets

If I am by myself I always where an Auto Lifjacket. During Powerboat Courses my customers wearing a 150n manual gas lifejacket at all times when on the water. Same with Skippered RIB Charter, lifejackets on at all times! If the weather is rough or on advanced course then crotch strapes are worn.
I find lifejackets fitted with crotch straps but not having them done up properly between your legs causes them to catch and snag and actually creating an extra hazard.
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Old 28 April 2003, 06:57   #14
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Yes I use mine for safety hence being manual and I have crotchstraps as they make a big difference in the water with the jacket inflated.

A govt agency tested life jackets before buying more and in terms or longterm commercial use they buy crewsaver as some others have weaknesses eg if you hit the water at an angle when its blown up it rips to pieces. OK a harsh test, but there are times when you know you have to spend the money on the right gear and cannot cut the corner!

Tiger
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Old 28 April 2003, 07:58   #15
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Life Jackets

Hi All

After just completing my level 2 i was shocked just how many people do venture out with no form of floatation other than the boat, one guy turned up with a flimsy vest type thing which upon asking by the instructor this devise turned out to be an oral inflation vest inflated once in the water, absolutely useless, and one other boat owner even asked why you actually need a life jacket.

Having come from a canoe and diving background i find it difficult to understand how anyone could contimplate going to sea with no life jacket, anyone who gets in my boat will wear a life jacket or bouancy aid at all times even in a calm harbour as accidents always tend to happen when you think your safe.

I have a manual inflation jacket which i use for safety boat work and becuase we tend to launch from a shallow beach it means always getting wet either launching or recovering boats, in addition i have a load of bouancy aids left over from my Kayak days and now put to work as rib bouancy devices for guests.

One other good point know ones yet mentioned is that the auto and manual inflation jackets will fit to any size adult, so if your like me fairly big and your guest aboard is small the same jacket can be adjusted to fit down and everyone's safe.


Richard
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Old 28 April 2003, 08:29   #16
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One of the greatest risks in SIBs and RIBs is them flipping back on top of you. Many people ware a manual jacket so that they can escape if this was to happen. I personaly recon that their is a greater risk of a head injery and so ware an automatic jacket. I have said it befor Spend the ectra £10 on a light. Worth it it could save your life.
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Old 28 April 2003, 11:59   #17
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I agree with dgpw, when in a safety role there are times when you dont want the auto inflate, like swimming to help someone get free of a dingy. Best off with a bouyancy aid really but makes diving under the boat a little harder!

Horses for course's !!!

Though I always wear the life jacket on the boat I have to confess that I don't always wear it on the pontoon and on slips.

This is quite hypacritical of myself as I belive that you are at risk at the waters edge (gets slimmy), on the pontoon because you tend to be talking and not looking for the cleat or a loose line or in simple you bump into some one.

From a safety point of view , particularly if you have families and need eyes in the back of your head you should put the gear on when safe and sound on land.

A third of boating accidents are said to happen on the slip, so watch out!

Tiger
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Old 28 April 2003, 12:54   #18
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Lifejackets

Automatic all round on my boat...except for 5 year old and 12 year old who have foam lifejackets (Crewsavers). I've done a passage today on a yacht in Force 6 - my auto jacket didn't go off and it certainly got wet a lot!

I too am amazed by the lack of lifejackets I see on 'jellymoulds' and 'fishing boats'. As a former dinghy sailor I am only too aware of the dangers of lifejackets in that situation (stuck under the boat), but would recommend anyone to make sure they've got their LJ on from slip to slip in a RIB.

We normally carry a spare auto jacket in any case - just had it serviced (put it on son and pulled cord - worked beautifully and stayed inflated overnight). Also carry spare cartridges and 'tablets' in the flare container.
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Old 28 April 2003, 14:51   #19
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no vat

In Ireland there was some talk of removing vat on safety equip such as lifejacjets, we regulary see clowns without jackets, at one London Boat Show I bought a light for mine for 10 pounds, its for sale here in Dublin for 46 euro more than twice the price,lifejackets can be pricy too I believe this is why people wont spend the money its madness
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