It can happen so quickly. - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 25 Old 12-20-2011 Thread Starter
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It can happen so quickly.

I was polishing my boat last week. I was using the step ladder at a sideways angle to the boat, but perhaps because I was pushing to hard the ladder suddenly jack knifed away from me. Somehow, I managed to grab the toe rail of the boat but the upshot of the situation was that here was a 200lb midlde aged male hanging on by his fingers some distance away from anybody else. Clearly, I was not going to have the luxury of spending any time thinking about what to do. I guessed that there was about 3 feet between me and the ground and so I braced myself for the impact and let go. The fall was not too bad (I have a badly bruised heel) but the danger that I had not thought about was that the ladder was lying on the ground sideways and just behind me. I fell back and luckily my head went between the legs of the ladder other wise Im sure that I would have cut my head open.
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post #2 of 25 Old 12-20-2011
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Glad you're ok. Thanks for sharing, it helps everyone stay safer.
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post #3 of 25 Old 12-20-2011
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Glad you're ok. Thanks for sharing, it helps everyone stay safer.
Except for Ron!

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S/V Frida

You can't steer a boat that isn't moving? Just like a life - P. Lutus
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post #4 of 25 Old 12-20-2011
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Thanks for the heads up, it is always a temptation on a ladder to reach out a little to get one more thing just out of reach before you have to climb down and move the ladder. DONT Do it. It is too easy to over ballance, and once the ladder starts moving it is too late to do anything but grab. Lucky your boat has good toe rails.

The Sun has Risen on a New Day filled with the Promise of Adventure.
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post #5 of 25 Old 12-20-2011
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Just think if he had pulled the boat off the stands!
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post #6 of 25 Old 12-20-2011
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Just think if he had pulled the boat off the stands!
I was actually waiting for that and cringing as I read the op's post. Thankfully that didn't occur!

1971 23' Oday Pop Top
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You can't steer a boat that isn't moving? Just like a life - P. Lutus
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post #7 of 25 Old 12-20-2011
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Took a similar fall off a stepladder at home one time... busted a rib - not fun. Glad you're OK..

Ron

1984 Fast/Nicholson 345 "FastForward"

".. there is much you could do at sea with common sense.. and very little you could do without it.."
Capt G E Ericson (from "The Cruel Sea" by Nicholas Monsarrat)
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post #8 of 25 Old 12-20-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ron_hudson View Post
I was polishing my boat last week. I was using the step ladder at a sideways angle to the boat, but perhaps because I was pushing to hard the ladder suddenly jack knifed away from me. Somehow, I managed to grab the toe rail of the boat but the upshot of the situation was that here was a 200lb midlde aged male hanging on by his fingers some distance away from anybody else. Clearly, I was not going to have the luxury of spending any time thinking about what to do. I guessed that there was about 3 feet between me and the ground and so I braced myself for the impact and let go. The fall was not too bad (I have a badly bruised heel) but the danger that I had not thought about was that the ladder was lying on the ground sideways and just behind me. I fell back and luckily my head went between the legs of the ladder other wise Im sure that I would have cut my head open.

For buffing the ladder steps should be facing the boat. This allows you to climb them backwards and lean back into it for support when buffing. If you put it sideways to the hull you found out what can happen..

Sorry about your heel. Try it with the ladder facing the hull and climb it with your butt facing the ladder and you facing the hull... A LOT easier on your body when buffing and you're pushing against the ladder the way it was designed.

Also use a carpenters tool belt for the polish & compound and some rags and a misting bottle of water...

Above all else BE CAREFUL!!!

______
-Maine Sail / CS-36T


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post #9 of 25 Old 12-20-2011
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Similar experience many years ago, ladder fell away, grabbed air and my ring caught toerail first, got other hand onto rail, could have lost a finger (oops! did that a few years latter, another war story), have never worn any jewelry since.
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post #10 of 25 Old 12-20-2011
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Did the same, sprained my ankle.
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