horshoe, danbuoy, throwing line ... etc?

brownsox

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I have NO intention of letting my HWMBO go overboard but ...
I've always been a bit puzzled about use of these various items. It must be hard to throw a horseshoe buoy with light very far. I gather it's NOT supposed to be attached to the boat, although I have seen boats where they are. We haven't got: danbuoy - they are very expensive and most seem to need assembling to some extent. Yeh, while crash tacking etc? A MOB sling on a rope which I think IS supposed to be tied on to the boat so you can tow it round in a circle till he catches it (?) Then there are throwing lines, which again we don't have. I'm a really girly thrower anyway. So what would you recommend as the best gear in this category for a small boat with a crew of two (60+ and cautious)?
We have done Day Skipper MOB drills, but you just throw the bucket and point at it!
 

pvb

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Half of a 2-person crew going overboard is going to be a major concern, so first precaution must be to wear harnesses and always clip on. Losing sight of the person in the water is a big problem, so a danbuoy might help to locate the casualty. For a single-handed crew, a life sling might be the easiest way to get a line to the person in the water. But the biggest problem is usually getting the water-logged person back on the boat - do you have a boarding ladder, or had you thought about rigging some sort of lifting tackle? It's a very difficult task. But harnesses are absolutely essential.
 

john_morris_uk

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No-one seriously thinks you can throw a horseshoe life ring, light and danbuoy very far. The idea is that you either put it in the oggin as soon as possible and hope that the person can swim to it, or drop it near them as you sail back past to give you time to get organised.

The idea of the danbuoy is to BOTH show the person in the water where the lifebelt is AND to show the people on board where the life belt (and hopefully) the casualty is. The lifebuoy should have a small drogue attached as well. In the past, danbuoys and lifebelts have blow away faster than the person in the water can swim.

Danbuoys might be cumbersome, but I wouldn't go offshore without one attached to the life-belt, with a light and drogue attached as well.

Put the flag on the top in a tube with a light line to the backstay. DON'T roll the flag up, but 'concertina it' so that it deploys properly when the tube comes free.

Think about ways of getting the casualty out of the water.

Practice.
 

pennycar9

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May I suggest that you arrange an RNLI sea check? someone will give you good advice on all things with regards to sea safety on a face to face basis.Good value and free.
 

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We are a 60s two person crew. I am afraid we have pretty much accepted that if I go over the side I am dead. I may be able to retreive swmbo in good wx, in daylight. We can certainly retrieve buckets and floats and the like but I doubt that has much to do with it really. We both wear auto lifejacket more-or-less full time above deck and clip on out of the cockpit at sea. We have two horseshoe bouys with lights (fresh batteries each year) and a massive RORC dan-buoy (ditto batteries). Still, if I fell in, I doubt swmbo could retrieve me. Get back to me? Very likely, but get me on board? I doubt it.

Just go sailing, don't fall in and don't think too much about it. Nobody lives forever.
 

fisherman

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I suggest that if you want to practice MOB recovery you tie two 25 litre plastic cans together by the handles, fill them with water. This should pretty much simulate, well, a 50 kg person, but more realistic than some other stuff mentioned.
 

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I have a horseshoe tied to the boat by a LONG line carefully coiled & tucked between the lifebelt & the rail. I also have a McMurdo style light tied to the lifebelt with a light (no pun intended) line. The plan (but never tested in actual rescue) is to grab the lot & sling it overboard inmmediately, start engine & motor round casualty slowly streaming the whole lot behind so that it "lassoes" casualty. They will then have buoancy and also be connected to boat. I can then stop engines & heave to or drop sails to set the boarding ladder & haul them back to the boat. If concious they can simply climb back on board.

If not concious, the chances of getting them back get a lot slimmer! Someone else needs to go in the water to tie them on & arrange to hoist them out with main halliard or head of sail. Clearly a second person in the water if only a 2 man crew is extremely dodgy, but don't see safer alternative at present. Perhaps one of those mooring hookers would work on a safety harness?
 

Caer Urfa

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After a trip earliar this year sailing alone when I only missed going over the side by pure luck it took me exactly six minutes when I got home to order 'jackstays' and fitted them two days later!
Also over 60 I sail alone and the lesson learned is to clip on to the jackstay even in good weather, who says you only fall overboard in bad weather!
Would I have made it back to the boat which has Danbouys,throwing lines, lifebuoys etc., not a chance the boat was in autopilot!!!
 

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My view on these bits of kit if sailing just the two of you (at 60+) is that on MOB shout, chuck it all overboard asap to mark the persons location (apart ftom the rope), then heave to, then put out mayday call. If you feel confident to drop the sails, get engine going, attempt rescue etc then all well and good, but chuck, heave to and mayday I think would be a good starting point.
 

Malcb

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Re: horseshoe, danbuoy, throwing line ... etc?

A MOB is a justifiable MAYDAY Call. In the sea temps that we experience in the UK, unless you are really, really confident of getting a MOB out of the water quickly, then send a Mayday. With the sea temperature as it is you would probably need immediate medical help anyway by the time you have recovered the MOB.
 
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Re: horseshoe, danbuoy, throwing line ... etc?

MOB may be a "justifiable MAYDAY call", but what practical good would it do? Unless you happen to be right next to a lifeboat, or under a helicopter, your own vessel is still going to be the nearest to the casualty, and the one which has to perform the rescue. By the time you've gone below, worked out a position, and made your mayday call you're chances of sighting your mate in the drink again will be zero.
Better to perform an immediate MOB routine with whatever gear you have, and whatever works for your boat. Practice will determine that. Get back to the casualty a.s.a.p, get the boat stopped, get him / her alongside and tied onto the boat. Then, if you want, you can reach for the radio.
This is one situation where you just have to sort it out yourself - nobody else is going to get there quick enough to save a life.
 
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These issues have been addressed by the RORC and ISAF, and I'm surprised that the guidance they issue in their publications isn't repeated in the IPC sailing mags here.....

They suggest the combination of the 'Quick Stop' and the 'LifeSling' techniques, and they also show a device for what is perhaps the hardest part, getting him back on board again. See the images below, and/or the RORC Racing Programme.

There's also info about dealing with the major killer, Hypothermia. I give URLs to this, for those who want it.

HYPO1 and HYPO2

I carry this stuff in a sleeve binder with other essential stuff, where everyone can find it, such as the guidance on Hypothermia. IMHO this is a darn sight more important than the SOLAS V signals leaflet - which is also in there somewhere.

BTW, while I agree that purchased dan buoys and so on are expensive, and I gave my manufactured Lifesling to a friend so time ago, I recently made up a couple of functional dan buoys, a life-sling, and a parbuckle net for the recovery of an involuntary swimmer. They're on a boat now. We've tested the stuff - it works, and it's cheap. Anyone could do the same......


MOB1.jpg


MOB2.jpg


Credits to US Sailing and RORC....

/forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif
 

William_H

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Hello Brown Sox one thing you can usefully practice for occasions other than MOB is the simple rope throw.
That is using any long rope without a weight etc.

The rope is attached to the ship at one end or you put your foot on it.
The rope is then picked up near the attached end and coiled up using right hand into the left hand. At a point about half way along the rope put one finger arounnd the coil and coil up the rest outside that finger so that you have the rope coiled into 2 halves. Or just separate the two halves after coiling. The coils should be a convenient size drooping about 2ft or 60cms. It is vital that you take time to coil the rope correctly as a rope thrown tangled will just flop in the water.

You now take the last half into your right hand and throw.

The throw involves essentially throwing the right hand coil as a weight by swinging back and swinging forward letting it go.
As the right hand coil is thrown the left hand coil is also thrown in a kind of halfhearted throw to follow the first coil.
The first coil thrown will kind of stay together and provide a weight to pull out the second coil until it is uncoiled when the first coil will also uncoil.
You will find the rope will uncoil and travel quite a useful distance.

It of course takes some practice. The art is very usefull for throwing lines to another boat. People on a distant jetty or people in the water. The beauty of it being with practice you can throw an ordinary piece of rope like a jib sheet quite well.

As for MOB you might try actually getting into the water then out again on a sunny day. A wet suit might be worth wearing. It will give you some insight into the problems of getting back into the boat. good sailling olewill (also 60)

It might give you incentive to harness or at least be carefull.
 

CPD

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Theory and practise are very different things. There can be no doubt whatsoever that MOB shorthanded is an instant mayday - help will be needed as quickly as possible, for either the rescue itself or aftercare, or both, especially (and with all due respect, if both are 60+). If help isnt sought IMMEDIATELY then shock, fear, cold, exhaustion (rescuer and rescuee) will take its toll. They need help, and fast.
 

fireball

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Re: horseshoe, danbuoy, throwing line ... etc?

That it takes time to work out your position and transmit a standard Mayday call has got to be just about the BEST reason to fit a DSC VHF with live GPS feed.

Method can then be clear - if anyone goes overboard hit the Red button for 5 seconds ... grab the handheld and get back up on deck. As you do preps for your own MOB recovery you might be able to shoot off a quick Mayday on the HH (assuming you're not too far from the coast). But either way a Mayday call has been initiated, local traffic and hopefully the CG will know that someone is in trouble ....
 

bluemoongaffer

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Re: horseshoe, danbuoy, throwing line ... etc?

I'm surprised nobody has mentioned a personal EPIRB? I would have thought this to be the most useful bit of kit if you're in any doubt about getting an MOB back on board. (I haven't got one yet but it's first equal with a "sea-me" on the list)
 

CPD

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Re: horseshoe, danbuoy, throwing line ... etc?

AN epirb (if gps type) will give position and mayday alert, but no detail. If in VHF range, I would have thought far better to use that than epirb. epirb is best for out of vhf range, and within vhf range is effectively superseded by DSC.
 

KINGFISHER 8

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Re: horseshoe, danbuoy, throwing line ... etc?

I have a ladder which folds up into the 'pushpit' and down into the water, well below the surface. While there's no guarantee that the person in the water will be able to climb up it, he/she might be able to if he/she hasn't been in the water for very long and it's a better bet than trying other methods with ropes/boom etc.
As for the good advice above - 'wear harnesses and always clip on' - it IS good advice but I'm afraid if I had to do that every time I went sailing I'd probably jack it in and take up golf! OK at night but not every time you get on the boat!
 

kcrane

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We have a plan for when one crew member goes over, which is shout & point, throw over exploding danbuoy (already on stern rail), heave to, push DSC emergency button on VHF, push MOB button on plotter, start engines, dump sails, throw out lifesling (already on stern rail), circle, engines neutral, collect, pull in to transom. Boarding ladder drops well below water level, but if too weak or too rough, drop rubber dinghy from davits into water. Pull crew into dinghy with davit hoist or with tackle kept in stern locker for this purpose (attached to shackle point already on boom) and run to the winch at the stern.

So we have danbuoy, sling, plotter, DSC radio, davits, dinghy and hoist in place. Crew wears auto lifejackets when out of cockpit. We also have horseshoe & light, but I think they'd prove pretty useless.

Still, even with practise... could the crew do that little lot if I went over? Could I manage if it was just two of us and SWMBO went over? What if the lifejacket didn't inflate? What if MOB was injured?

My conclusion is that you do what you can to avoid MOB, you have a plan and you fit the kit to effect a rescue and you call for help immediately. In end you know there are risks, you mitigate them and then accept what risk is left for the joy sailing brings, otherwise what are you doing out there?
 

cpedw

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There have been many replies but a quick scan didn't show the piece of kit that we (late middle aged couple) think will help - a 6 to 1 tackle with snap hooks on both ends. We also have 2 horseshoes, both with drogues, one attached to a homemade danbuoy, and a lifesling.
The lifesling and lifejackets (which wwe don't often use - tut) can be clipped to one end of the tackle and the other end can go on several places on the boom or on the end of a cleated halyard. The weaker party has demonstrated that she can use this arrangement to lift me out of a dinghy into the boat.
We also use the tackle to allow me to self-ascend the mast, with the deck crew periodically taking up slack but not needing to haul a load.

Just a thought,
Derek
 
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