Page 14 - Mid America Boating - August 2021 issue
P. 14

Boat Smart

     ]     14                                                                                                          do put additional people in the water, be cer-

                             MAN                                                                                       tain they have life jackets on and have prop-
                                                                                                                       erly fastened them up before they enter the
     AUGUST 2021     [     MID-AMERICA BOATING
                                                                                                                       water.  In addition, have them take a life line
       OVERBOARD!                                                                                                      if possible.
                                                                                                                         Approach downwind of the person to avoid
                                                                                                                       running over them.  As soon as you have a
                                                                                                                       line to them or they have a hold on the boat,
      By Capt. Fred Davis                                                                                              put the engine in neutral to avoid them hav-
                                                                                                                       ing any contact with the propellers.  Keep in
        Captain Fred Davis, who dedicated himself to                                                                   mind; they may still be in a panic state or per-
      decades of continously promoting boating safety,                                                                 haps exhausted.  If you are in a small boat, be
      wrote hundreds of boating columns on the subject                                                                 careful not to capsize the boat while bringing
      that were published during his lifetime in                                                                       the person aboard.
      Mid-America Boating and other publications.                                                                        A man overboard experience can be very
      Captain Fred passed away in 2019, but many                                                                       difficult and stressful.  The success of the res-
      of his discussions about boating safety remain                                                                   cue will depend on your ability to function
      timeless. Here is one of his many columns                                                                        quickly in a level headed manner.  A practice
      pertaining to the universal message about boating                                                                drill can help you to know how to react.
      safety as you enjoy another season.   steps to be taken.                    throw anything that will float in their direc-  When practicing, do not put a person in the
                                              The first step is; get close enough to the  tion.  Life jackets, coolers, fish boxes - they all  water.  Simply throw a life jacket, float or
        Man overboard incidents are difficult to  person in the water to throw a floatation  have buoyancy and may help keep the person  fender overboard and try to retrieve it as fast
      handle for both the people aboard the boat  device, ring buoy or cushion. If you have  afloat.  If you throw a polyline, fasten one end  as possible.
      and rescue personal.  According to the USCG,  someone aboard, direct them to keep visual  to your vessel. Use extreme caution to avoid  If you have a regular fishing or boating
      attempting to relieve oneself over the side of  contact by pointing with an outstretched arm  fouling the rope in your props.  partner, be sure they know what you may
      the boat is the leading cause of man over-  toward the victim.  This will assist you in  If you cannot retrieve the person, keep  expect of them in this or any other type of
      board cases.                          maneuvering to a pick up point.       them in sight and repeat your original MAY-  emergency while underway.
        Each man overboard case differs, but all  While maneuvering the boat to the posi-  DAY call, giving your boats position and  Excellent, detailed instructions are found
      dictate the necessity for quick action.  Instant  tion of the person in the water, place a MAY-  include a description of the person in the  online where numerous sites display photo
      panic can occur and to trust one would not  DAY call on your VHF radio stating; man  water.  Should you successfully retrieve the  images to guide you through the procedure.
      panic is easy, but response to an actual inci-  overboard, your present position, and your  person from the water, go back to the radio  MAB
      dent is yet another story.            vessel name.                          and notify all stations to cancel MAYDAY, per-
        The foremost problem is skippers do not  You have now alerted the nearest rescue  son is retrieved.            Perils of the Freshwater Seas, an anthology
      practice man overboard drills.  They help exe-  assistance as well as other boats in the area.  DO NOT place additional persons over-  of stories and experiences written by Captain Fred
      cute a planned procedure if a real need aris-  If you are unsuccessful in placing the floata-  board unless there is no other means of  Davis is available for $22.30 (includes shipping)
      es.  The plan and its implementation dictate  tion device near the person in the water,  retrieving the person from the water.  If you  E-Mail: padavis2006@comcast.net






















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