Kayaking safety hints/requirements

Discussion of safety equipment and use.

Re: Kayaking safety hints/requirements

Postby Matt S » Wed Apr 09, 2014 6:46 pm

Matt S wrote: Today I made a "stirrup" for the just in-case Im too tired and first chance I get I'll go practice my remounts with that too!!

FOLLOW UP: I found the stirrup idea is worse than useless. Got to try it out at Adder Rock in the surf zone and not only did it NOT help it actually ended up wrapped around the paddle which made it very interesting in the waves :beye:
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Re: Kayaking safety hints/requirements

Postby Lazybugger » Wed Apr 09, 2014 6:57 pm

Matt S wrote:
Matt S wrote: Today I made a "stirrup" for the just in-case Im too tired and first chance I get I'll go practice my remounts with that too!!

FOLLOW UP: I found the stirrup idea is worse than useless. Got to try it out at Adder Rock in the surf zone and not only did it NOT help it actually ended up wrapped around the paddle which made it very interesting in the waves :beye:


Matt, i've tried the stirrup and found it helpful before but haven't tried it in the surfzone. Usually when I end up off the yak in the surfzone I don't bother remounting I just meet the yak back (or guide back ) on shore, empty out any water and try again or give up and go home.

I think surfzone is one of those places where you need to make a quick remount and need to do it without a stirrup as it is something you could get tangled in so shouldn't have it pre-deployed. I keep mine in the back hatch so its really something to use if past the breakers.
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Re: Kayaking safety hints/requirements

Postby tonystott » Wed Apr 09, 2014 7:03 pm

arpie wrote:Sage advice, Occy - I really MUST jump in & see how I go getting back on again ..... I can always just manually blow up the vest to check it out in 'up' mode!!

I can also just add a 'groin belt' to keep the vest 'in place', so it doesn't ride up! :wink:

cheers

Roberta

Roberta, the Stormy straps are better described as "thigh straps", as there are two of them and they actually go round each leg, rather than (ahem) "up the middle" :roll:

If anybody wants to add straps to another brand of PFD, this is a much preferred solution.
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Re: Kayaking safety hints/requirements

Postby tonystott » Sat Apr 12, 2014 12:55 pm

Following the advice of Arpie and others, I visited the grand opening of BCF here in Forster today (hmm weekend trading, what a bloody good idea, you listening Mr Barclay?) and bought one of those plastic horns. Took it out into my car and nearly blew my lungs out for zero sound. Walked back in and a sales guy got another off the shelf, and gave it a little blow. The whole shop stopped in their tracks! Unreal!

I have since tried it outdoors, and it is so loud that my ears both went numb and I could hardly hear anything for a few seconds.

Do not, under any circumstances, blow into one of these horns while sitting in a car either, don't ask me how I know.

Best $9.99 safety item I have ever bought. This would HAVE to be a life saver if an inattentive stink boater is heading your way, or if you need to summon help.

Thanks for the heads-up Roberta.
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Re: Kayaking safety hints/requirements

Postby Plakkyboat » Sun Apr 20, 2014 11:24 am

At that rate you might be joining the 'Tinnitus Club" very soon Tony. I'm already a life member and trust me it's not a pleasant condition to live with.
I was very surprised to read that you risked permanent damage to your ears especially when you knew you were going to use it.

It's probably a stretch to believe that Vincent van Gogh cut off his ear in an attempt at self-performed surgery to relieve the Ménière's symptom of tinnitus.
Howerver, perhaps it's fair warning of how difficult it is to live with this problem.

Pretty sure it's similar poor decisions that landed me in this horrible condition in the first place. :beye:
Different matter if you were at sea and didn't have time to put in some ear plugs to avoid an accident.

This horn is a great idea for an onboard safety. I checked them out at BCF and because of the size I can't see how it's practical to carry one on your person.
However I can see the value in realation to preventing the stink boat running over you. Good point Tony.

If I get one of these horns, I have some ear plugs already put aside to carry on my yak in hope that I get a chance to put them in first.
The design of these horns forces you to blow from the side which makes me wonder if it's louder in one ear as a result of the direction of the part that makes the actual noise.

I recall being almost run over by a catamaran whilst fishing in my tinnie at our favourite nearby fishing spot out in Aldinga Bay S.A.
It took a very loud scream to get their attention to turn at the very last minute to avoid a serious accident. One of those horns would have come in handy back then.
At least you can usually hear stink boats coming which may mean you would have time to reach for the horn but with quiet sail boats, not so much... :shout:

If I go overboard and get separated from the kayak, I will still need a good quality whistle so I just ordered a Fox40 Sharx (120db) rescue whistle on Ebay for $15 and that'll fit in my PFD no problems.
Finally got around to getting a quality whistle for the PFD.
Thanks for the heads-up on that one (some time ago) Tony.

Fox 40 Sharx Whistle.png
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Re: Kayaking safety hints/requirements

Postby arpie » Sun Apr 20, 2014 12:59 pm

....Do not, under any circumstances, blow into one of these horns while sitting in a car either, don't ask me how I know.....

:lol: :lol: I TOLD you it would scare the crap out of you!!! They take the 'membrane/piece of cellophane' out of them in Kmart, cos people have scared the crap out of other shoppers when testing them!! Probably had a lot of 'mess' to clean up, too!! :lol: So maybe they'd done that to the one in BCF.

Paul - I have mine tied to the seat straps & it sits in the backpack behind the seat, so easy access should I be required to use it.

The one time I HAVE used it (up in the river at SWR some years back) had everyone looking around for ducks!!! :lol: Maybe I wasn't blowing hard enough! The sound sure travels tho!!

I am taking my 'groin belted' Hobie Life jacket to WA with me - lots of pockets for jigs/line etc so I don't store so much crap in the side pockets of the yak! :lol:

cheerio

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Re: Kayaking safety hints/requirements

Postby Plakkyboat » Sun Apr 20, 2014 2:44 pm

Sound Scale.png
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Re: Kayaking safety hints/requirements

Postby tonystott » Sun Apr 20, 2014 6:26 pm

Paul, I think (hope?) the key word in that noise table is "sustained" :roll:

I plan to keep my safety dry bag threaded on my 9 metre "skipper tether" which will be connected to me via carabiner when offshore.
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Re: Kayaking safety hints/requirements

Postby liam » Thu Jul 24, 2014 1:07 pm

how tall dose your flag have to be
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Re: Kayaking safety hints/requirements

Postby nqkayaktours » Thu Jul 24, 2014 8:26 pm

liam wrote:how tall dose your flag have to be

A minimum of 1mtr. Get a push bike flag or motor scooter flag. They are about 2 mtrs and good. Orange is best for visability.

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Re: Kayaking safety hints/requirements

Postby kayakone » Thu Jul 24, 2014 8:37 pm

Ditto.
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Re: Kayaking safety hints/requirements

Postby guruknot » Thu Jul 24, 2014 9:31 pm

thanks very much for the information iam looking at wanting to go offshore for the first time soon,very valuble info could save lives.
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Re: Kayaking safety hints/requirements

Postby arpie » Mon Nov 24, 2014 10:16 am

ANY PFD ........ (particularly inflatable ones) can actually make it very difficult to remount your yak and if your inflatable is FULLY INFLATED using the gas bottle - it can almost be impossible to remount - so if you DO deploy the gas bottle to inflate your life jacket, when remounting, you may actually need to DEFLATE it a tad, to facilitate a self rescue - but not TOO MUCH to make it ineffective!

Also, a 'step up' (giving you a foot hold to climb back into your yak - but you need to do it correctly to prevent further capsize ...) see here for one method:
http://www.sit-on-topkayaking.com/Artic ... eFloat.htm

Here is another one - where a counter balance (like a bucket of water) stabilizes the yak whilst you get back on board:


Lureandfly recently did an article on maintaining your inflatable PFDs ..... (it is well worth subscribing to their blog as they have some really good info & tips every other week!)
http://lureandfly.com/2014/11/14/once-a-year/

and I added my bit to the bottom ...... as I have resorted to doing this a few times now, when in confronting situations both here in Wallis Lake and offshore in NZ a couple of years back ...... you can never appreciate what fear and cold can do to obstruct your self rescue attempts - until it happens ........ particularly out in very deep water!

Being a Kayak Fisho – if I get into a situation where I even begin to feel uncomfortable in rough conditions, even in enclosed waters – I manually inflate the PFD so that IF I end up in the water ‘unexpectedly’ – I ALREADY have buoyancy! Offshore – I would recommend it being partially inflated anyway – as you never know if/when you are going to ‘go in’! No need to ‘wait for the emergency’! I have been in the water before and NOT needed the PFD to be inflated, as I was in control of the situation & was not in danger as it wasn’t rough. I was fully clothed & just trod water & did breast stroke until a buddy came to my aid. Be Prepared – Don’t Panic! IF you have difficulty getting back onto your kayak with the PFD inflated – you can manually deflate it a little to make it easier, as the bulkiness of a fully inflated PFD can make it very difficult to remount your yak. Just don’t deflate it too much! Also – make sure you have some rope on board with which to TIE YOURSELF to your yak in case hypothermia or tiredness prevents you from remounting – rest up until you get to shallower water or are able to effect a remount or get assistance from buddies or are located by coast guard. Safe Yakkin’!

Stay Safe - Stay Alive

cheers

Roberta

If you are 'out there' and then begin to feel really uncomfortable - don't stay out there!!

Head back to shore immediately - to the closest shore you can - it doesn't have to be back to where you car is - in a safety matter, it is as the old saying goes ...... ANY PORT IN A STORM!!

You can always walk back to your car & retrieve your yak later ...... or just 'walk it along the shallows' back to where you launched!
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Re: Kayaking safety hints/requirements

Postby Plakkyboat » Mon Nov 24, 2014 2:29 pm

arpie wrote:If you are 'out there' and then begin to feel really uncomfortable - don't stay out there!!

Head back to shore immediately - to the closest shore you can - it doesn't have to be back to where you car is - in a safety matter, it is as the old saying goes ...... ANY PORT IN A STORM!!

You can always walk back to your car & retrieve your yak later ...... or just 'walk it along the shallows' back to where you launched!


Well thought out advice Roberta. Very useful links too.

Are those inflatable PFDs able to be inflated orally (like a scuba diving buoyancy compensation vest) as well as from a pressurised canister/bottle?

"Any port in a storm" reminds me of the mindless philosophy I was guilty of using in my youth in relation to some short term girlfriends.
My thinking about feeling "really uncomfortable" is that if you know your limitations (and you should) then why go out into situations that may risk the generation of such feelings.

Most times the risks can be calculated (if you know your limitations) and if there is any chance you may be putting yourself at risk unnecessarily then perhaps it would be wiser to not go out at all or at least not go out alone...

Risk is normal in life but calculated risk is less of the norm.

Ageing certainly contributes to improvement in the general understanding of 'relative risk' with some acceptance of 'slight risks'.

In my experience, chance usually favours the prepared mind.
Last edited by Plakkyboat on Tue Apr 07, 2015 3:54 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Kayaking safety hints/requirements

Postby arpie » Mon Nov 24, 2014 2:57 pm

Hi Paul

....Are those inflatable PFDs able to be inflated orally (like a scuba diving buoyancy compensation vest) as well as from a pressurised canister/bottles...

Yep - there is an orange or red tube in the area that the bulb is - and that is for manual inflation. To be honest, I have never used my pressurised bulb 'in anger' .......but HAVE inflated it myself to a degree that I felt I had enough floatation 'if required'!

.....know your limitations (and you should) then why go out into situations that may risk the generation of such feelings.....
ABSOLUTELY!! My own theory (stated earlier on the thread) is IF IN DOUBT - DON'T GO OUT!

....."Any port in a storm"..... hmmmm, not sure about that girlfriend analogy!! :wink:
I've actually done this on one occasion up past SWR ........ a massive electrical storm started up & I had to just head straight to shore & climbed up onto someone's jetty & dragged my yak thru their back yard to get to the road to 'walk it' back to the car - as there wasn't a 'beach' to walk along - it was a tree lined river! :beye:

....My thinking about feeling "really uncomfortable" is that if you know your limitations..
If you haven't been in this situation yet - it is just a matter of time before you are - and when you get that 'What The' feeling you will instantly recognise it ...... and that it is time to get out of there immediately! ...... after blowing up your vest a tad!!

cheerio

Roberta

Another US yak site with THEIR views on yakking safety & PFDs ......
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