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Go Back   SailNet Community > Out There > Cruising and Sailing with Children
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Cruising and Sailing with Children All things sailing and kids related, from safety to life aboard.


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  #21  
Old 07-28-2011
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Our 12 year old does not have an inflatable yet, but that is ok because we also use hers as a kayak paddle jacket.
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  #22  
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If it were an auto- inflate, we would be buying a lot of cartridges!
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  #23  
Old 09-11-2011
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We live on the coast of South Carolina and do a lot of sailing and power boating with our three and four year old children. When sailing on hot calm days inshore, we have great luck with the following puddle jumper vest for our four year old.

Amazon.com: Stearns Kids' Puddle Jumper Deluxe Life Jacket: Sports & Outdoors

If the weather is bad or the conditions are rough, we use a rigid mustang vest or a neoprene ski type vest with leg strap and neck support.

Our kids are required to wear life vests whenever on dock or boat no matter the conditions. Every now and then you get some whining, but the rule is "no vest, no go." That pretty much nips it in the bud.

Best advice I can give is to put them in the life vest and let them swim and play. Throw them in the pool and see how both respond. A child going overboard will be scared. You need to make sure the vest works as advertised, that the four year old can right themselves if the vest does not have a neck support, and that the child will not fall out of the vest if it has no leg strap.

Have fun!
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Old 09-11-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dreamstimer View Post
Don't tell me you all wear rigid jackets. Btw, Pdqaltair aside, do you all wear your lifejackets all the time? Honestly...
!
When our grand kids are on board Linda and I both wear our PFDs any time we are not below decks. All the time. The safety rules that apply to the six year old and eight year old apply to us.

Now, that said, if they are not on board we wear our Mustang inflatables most of the time.

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  #25  
Old 09-11-2011
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Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
That's right, even the President of the United States was issued a PFD that was NOT USCG APPROVED.
The two Mustang Auto inflates that Linda and I wear are not approved in Canada because we happen to have bought them in the USA.

In addition, in Canada, an inflatable PFD is NOT considered as a PFD unless it is being worn. So, four people on board, four inflatable PFDs on the table in the cockpit - no other PFDs on board, if you get stopped you are liable for about $800.00 in fines.

We wear ours almost all the time, but we also have some cheap "legal" PFDs below to satisfy any overly zealous law enforcement persons. But, I have yet to have a marine law enforcement person ask "Can you take that PFD off and show me where it says "Approved in Canada", please."

All that I have encountered on both sides of the border have been polite, professional and pleasant to deal with.

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Re: Life jackets for kids: rigid or inflatable?

Go for rigid. Children around 4 year old are very playful, inflatable are not suitable at this ages for kids.
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Re: Life jackets for kids: rigid or inflatable?

I'm in Texas, we have 100+ temps starting in the next few weeks and ending in the fall.

My kids always wear at least a waterskiing type PFD, (full torso, slim body contoured, bright colored). Grownups also wear a PFD, (I don't use inflatables).

The youngest get a retaining strap, they are allowed to upgrade when they demonstrate a high level of swimming ability.

Also younger kids are tethered to an adult. I like this better than tethering to a boat. 1. safer 2. they don't feel like a tethered pet. 3. less likely to try to detach themselves. 4. Less likely to be accidently forgotten, when grownups move to galley. 5. that one adult is responsible for child tethered to them, instead of group, ("I though someone else was watching?")

If they get hot? Thats what iced drinks are for....well that and the cockpit shower, or a good dunking.
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Last edited by CapnBilll; 04-30-2012 at 02:19 PM.
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Old 04-30-2012
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Re: Life jackets for kids: rigid or inflatable?

my kids wore foam PFDs up to about 4-5. then they were good swimmers. Then we switched them to auto inflatables sized for kids. We wear our auto inflatables nearly always. of course for swimming and that we used a buoyancy aid.
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