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Old 08-27-2018, 11:40 PM   #1
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Default Overboard problem

I have been pondering this and would like some thoughts.

We all have "throwable devices" on our boats as required. But for a typical outboard fishing boat in the teens to thirty-something size, the speed and maneuverability may mean it's really worthless.

Scenario: Two guys running out to the fishing grounds at 30 or 40-something mph and one falls overboard. Does it make sense to stop and throw a cushion or ring? Won't that just slow him down getting back to him? Won't the other guy instinctively just turn sharply and reaccelerate back to get him? Or should he spend time throwing something before trying to get back?

Unless the throwable is right at the steering wheel, it seems to me it's just a rule we have but it means nothing.
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Old 08-27-2018, 11:50 PM   #2
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disagree to a point. If someone were in the water, get the flotation to them, then they will be stationary and not coming towards the boat, while you position the boat in order to recover them. There more relaxed than if they were treading water.... I keep my ring directly behind the helm on a rod holder. easy reach and easy to deploy from there. I'm glad I have never needed to deploy for real.... 2 censt
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Old 08-27-2018, 11:52 PM   #3
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If they were wearing a PDF, then I think you have time to turn around and get them w/o worries. If they weren't wearing one, the sooner you can toss a throwable, the better their chances are to getting to it before you can even get turned around and back to them.

By the time you realize they are overboard (even instantly), the speed of the boat, the time to slow and turn, or even turning at full throttle will take time and distance to recoup the time and distance already lost.
So toss the throwable, and safely turn the boat around to rescue the victim.
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Old 08-28-2018, 07:17 AM   #4
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I kept my throwable stored until the Coast Guard boarded me and said it had to be out and accessible immediately... Now that I have a Tbag in my T top, I keep 4 pfds and my throwable up there... As fer falling over board, if you are a distance before realizing someone is overboard, throwing it wouldn't work but I reckon if you are slow speed or anchored and someone goes over that can't swim then the throwable makes sense..
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Old 08-28-2018, 08:25 AM   #5
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The throwable is just another safety device. Doesn't mean your going to use it every time but it's there incase the situation calls for it. The steps we were taught(in lifesaving) years ago I think still apply. Think, throw, row, go. If someone falls overboard at anchor and carried away from the boat, the throw would come into play, until you can get off anchor and retrieve them.
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Old 08-28-2018, 08:34 AM   #6
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Depends on who falls overboard. J/K'ing. Jason, I got pulled over pulling into Little Sabine at the Blues show (safety check) because the guy didn't see any PFD's on board. I keep them in the console and accessible for easy reach. He stated they had to be out. Told the guy that I had worked three years as a DNR officer and that wasn't the rule that I remember. Anyway, got back to Big Lagoon ramp and there were 3 FWC officers there so I asked them. The answer I received was: guy was probably being over protective because of all the people. I can understand his position but they probably shouldn't be telling people wrong. Anyway, I'm like Jim, my throw ring (boat cushion) hangs on a rod holder on the leaning post anytime I'm underway.
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Old 08-28-2018, 09:22 AM   #7
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Thanks for the thoughts. I was also told, by the USCG, that it has to be out, so I'm planning to mount a ring on the side of the console. But you can't throw from that location without slowing and leaving the helm, which prompted the question.

I thought of hanging it on the back of the leaning post but there isn't a place on mine for a ring bracket. But the comment about having it there is appreciated, I might just hang the cushion I already have off a rod holder.
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Old 08-28-2018, 10:10 AM   #8
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Here's where I keep mine, all the time... behind the angler with the rod
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Old 08-28-2018, 11:47 AM   #9
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If someone throws in in bad weather or rough seas it might be tough to find him quickly so they could be floating for awhile. I tied a dock line to my throwable pfd’s to give the person a bigger target to get back to the pfd. Throwing the flotation increases the chance of survival at the risk of a $14 floatie, that’s not a bad deal. Also I think falling overboard while the boat in anchored in a strong current would be a better example. It’ll take time to get off the hook then get to the person if they can’t make it back to the boat and who knows how far they would have drifted by then.
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Old 08-28-2018, 03:51 PM   #10
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I wasn't really questioning the value at anchor or drifting, I guess I wasn't clear.

But the rough water situation is really important. I met a guy years ago who fell off a sailboat in Mississippi Sound in a 3 ft chop. He said he was a good swimmer and relatively fit but he thought he was going to drown. And if your throw isn't really accurate they may not be able to get the throwable.

On sailboats they use a harness in rough weather or at night offshore. That might not be a bad idea. And surely inflatable PFDs at night and rough weather offshore.
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