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post #11 of 23 Old 4 Days Ago
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Re: Practical safety and security advice

Is there a way to rig a sensor on each side of the companionway? Sort of like a wireless "trip" laser. Activate at night when the kids go to bed. If they wander out, lights or an alarm sounds. Unobtrusive and harmless. You might rig the light or alarm just above your berth.
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post #12 of 23 Old 4 Days Ago
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Re: Practical safety and security advice

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Originally Posted by tellemark32 View Post
light or alarm just above your berth.
Really? I think I'd want it to make a gawd awful noise and flashing lights everywhere.
The point IMO, is to dissuade the kids from going out, not to catch them doing something wrong.

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post #13 of 23 Old 4 Days Ago
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tellemark32 View Post
Is there a way to rig a sensor on each side of the companionway? Sort of like a wireless "trip" laser. Activate at night when the kids go to bed. If they wander out, lights or an alarm sounds. Unobtrusive and harmless. You might rig the light or alarm just above your berth.
Well, the OP posted this question over a year ago so our advice is a little late. The trip is done and over by now. I wonder how it turned out. He didn't come back to give us a report of how things went.
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post #14 of 23 Old 3 Days Ago
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Re: Practical safety and security advice

I think we are taking the wrong approach.

5-year olds are taught to be safe around roads. They walk home from school. At 5 I knew enough not to play in the street. Same thing. By the time my girl was 5 I trusted her on deck. They should all be able to swim, at least a little. There should be a swim ladder down.

I also took her rock climbing, not at the gym, but in scary places. I taught her to use sense around cliffs.

Don't tie them down. Don't yell at them around hazards. Teach them to respect hazards.

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post #15 of 23 Old 3 Days Ago
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I think we are taking the wrong approach.

By the time my girl was 5 I trusted her on deck. They should all be able to swim, at least a little. There should be a swim ladder down.
I don't think the original poster was wanting to tie their kids down or prevent them from being on deck he wanted to be aware of when they were. My kids knew how to swim prior to 1 year old. But I still would want to know, for me to be aware, when they're in the water or out on deck.

He said that he had one of those kids who had the type of personality where he would be tempted to try anything he was told not to do. I've known children like that, the fearless daredevils. They can be dangerous.

If your 5 year old gets up at the crack of dawn and sneaks out on deck and has a half an hour before you wake up, and are aware of it, there is a lot of room for a child that young to get into trouble. They could be snatched off the boat by a stranger walking by on the dock. They could fall in the water and be washed away by a current that's greater than their ability to swim against. A child like that may try and start the engine or try and crank a winch like they have seen daddy do and end up dropping winch handles in the water. It's not about limiting their adventures, it's about being aware when they're on the move so you can share their adventures with them.
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Re: Practical safety and security advice

In my experience--limited, but I have taken many groups of kids sailing and rock climbing--is to make it clear that daredevil behavior will get you un-included from fun stuff when such behavior is a safety hazard. I make sure being un-included is an uncool experience, not one that earns rebel points or attracts attention. They will simply be ignored. I make sure the kids get positive attention for everything else. I make it clear that I sail and climb all the time and don't really care if we go home. I do NOT extend this discipline to non-safety related behaviors so that it is clear that it is NOT about me being in charge. There is only safe or not-included.

Perhaps poorly worded. But the point is to make sure the kid understands there is a clear difference between safety problems and other discipline. They need to understand that with safe behavior they get to do really fun, cool stuff, and that with unsafe behavior they cannot not be included, not because we are angry, but because it is impossible. Make safe more fun than daredevil.

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post #17 of 23 Old 3 Days Ago
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In my experience--limited, but I have taken many groups of kids sailing and rock climbing--is to make it clear that daredevil behavior will get you un-included from fun stuff.....
And how does this work with five-year-olds?
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post #18 of 23 Old 2 Days Ago Thread Starter
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Re: Practical safety and security advice

I really should have replied to this sooner and updated all those individuals who gave me advice - so sorry!!

I got a lot of replies saying fundamentally that you just need to simply "teach" your kids not to go up on deck but what I was looking for were "failsafes". My boy did not go up on deck but if something had happened and I had not put the requisite controls in place as an adult I would never forgive myself!!

Firstly, the trip was an amazing success and much more relaxed than i thought it would be both quayside and at anchor. Before we set sail I bought two things: 1) A motion alarm for the companionway and cabin and 2) a portable travel door alarm for the hatch rigged internally.

I used both of them for the first few nights but I kept setting the motion sensor off myself when going up to check on movements during the night so did away with that by night three!! I did keep using the alarm on the hatch when I was inside and that was really useful actually as I felt it did the job of notifying for both entry and exit.

In any event, I slept up on deck quite a bit as I was rising so much during the night to make sure we were not drifting etc and I slept better up there - its much easier to just open an eye and raise your head than keep going up on deck was my logic (virgincruiser stuff i guess!!).

The other thing that I did was give each of the kids a (very very important) job leaving my youngest for the last (and "most important") job. His job was the safety of the boat and everyone on board - lifejackets on, harnesses on if going forward and making sure I was awake before anyone went up on deck as well as watching for rocks when underway - that worked the best because he really took it seriously when I asked him to make sure of the safety of his sisters!! So it was his rule to enforce, not a rule being enforced upon him.

So all told it was a great success. Thanks to everyone for their great advice. Looking forward to our next trip this August!! A new post on same coming p as this time we are not joining a flotilla!! thank again. VC
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post #19 of 23 Old 2 Days Ago
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Re: Practical safety and security advice

VirginCruiser,
Glad to hear you had a great trip and thanks for this post. Coincidentally I was thinking about this very same problem this morning - I have a 3 yr old and 6 yr old and we are planning our first overnighter on our boat and I was also worried about how to ensure my 3 year old doesn't wander on deck during the night/morning. Never would have thought about travel door alarms but I will definitely be getting one - great solution.
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post #20 of 23 Old 2 Days Ago
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Re: Practical safety and security advice

What type of alarm system did you use? Also, did you rig this as an alarm when you were away from the boat (to know if someone boarded the boat) or do you use a different alarm system that works with a smartphone?
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