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  #21  
Old 01-05-2013
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Re: Taking inflatable PFDs on airplanes?

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Originally Posted by jackdale View Post
In Canada inflatables must be worn to be legit. Is that also true in the US?
I believe that is also true in the US. In our annual USCG volunteer safety check inspection; "In order for an inflatable PFD to be counted as a valid PFD towards requirements, it must be worn by the crew during inspection".

We always wear our inflatables in the dinghy, very comfortable. We have grandkids on the sailboat often so we wear our inflatables 100% of the time to at least set as an example. I am so used to wearing it that it is automatic like a seat belt in a car.
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Old 01-09-2013
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Re: Taking inflatable PFDs on airplanes?

Quick update here:

The Sunsail-provided PFDs are not great (although very new and clean). Although not stamped with a USCG type label (since we're not in the US), they are basically equivalent to a Type I PFD. And while I do not debate the necessity of having these aboard in these waters, they are so bulky (6" thick foam on the chest) and hot that they are basically unwearable in tropical weather unless extreme conditions compel you to do so.

Going on the theory that the best PFD is the one that actually gets worn, it would have been much better to also have more comfortable gear aboard. I will not hesitate to don these if we encounter a squall or other hazardous condition, but in general we are not wearing these in normal conditions. And after being so used to always having the inflatables on all the time, it feels a lot like driving without a seat belt. Next time I'll check a bag if I need to, and bring the inflatables along.

The dinghy situation is interesting. Over the last three evenings I have seen dozens of dinghies at the dinghy dock, and not a single one (except for ours) has life jackets aboard. I don't see any people carrying them around. I've seen people boarding and de-boarding, and none of them have them. People are dinghying to shore, including in darkness, without PFDs on the boat. It's surprising and disappointing. Maybe I'm just too idealistic. The Type I PFDs are way too big to fit into the mesh bag we brought, so we're leaving them on the dinghy and hoping nobody takes them.

Overall, the trip is going great, with a couple of interesting mishaps that I'll write about later. Our itinerary has been Road Town - Trellis Bay - Gorda Sound (Bitter End) - Marina Cay (where WiFi reaches the mooring balls). This morning my son has a rendezvous dive (and we have a service call to fix a bad starter wire - one of the mishaps), then we head through Camanoe Passage, quick stop at Monkey Point, and over to Great Harbour on Jost.
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  #23  
Old 01-09-2013
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Re: Taking inflatable PFDs on airplanes?

Rick,

Sounds like you are having fun...safe trip

Dave
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Old 01-09-2013
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Re: Taking inflatable PFDs on airplanes?

Sounds like a good trip.. we've noticed the lack of PFDs in dinghies amongst the cruisers of all nationalities all the way from St Martin to Grenada.. seems to be a cultural thing...
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Old 01-09-2013
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Re: Taking inflatable PFDs on airplanes?

Cultural thing? You mean, like the way here in the US not so long ago everyone would taunt you and call you a nancy boy if you wore a PFD at all?

The USCG and others have spent decades convincing the US public that PFDs aren't such a bad thing. Culturally? Nah.
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Old 01-09-2013
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Re: Taking inflatable PFDs on airplanes?

Quote:
Originally Posted by TakeFive View Post
The dinghy situation is interesting. Over the last three evenings I have seen dozens of dinghies at the dinghy dock, and not a single one (except for ours) has life jackets aboard. I don't see any people carrying them around. I've seen people boarding and de-boarding, and none of them have them. People are dinghying to shore, including in darkness, without PFDs on the boat. It's surprising and disappointing. Maybe I'm just too idealistic. The Type I PFDs are way too big to fit into the mesh bag we brought, so we're leaving them on the dinghy and hoping nobody takes them.
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Old 01-09-2013
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Re: Taking inflatable PFDs on airplanes?

TakeFive, glad you are having a great time. We will be right on the heals of that itinerary in a few more weeks. Can't wait.

People really get in island mode down there, as you've no doubt realized. That includes be very lax about safety. Not saying its right.

However, I will acknowledge that I find the risk of dying from falling out of a dinghy in 80 deg water in a small harbor to be very very low. Unless, one is not a good swimmer. Way more than once, I've swum from the mooring all the way to shore anyway.
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Old 01-09-2013
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Re: Taking inflatable PFDs on airplanes?

If you visit Louisiana most people are not aware of it but, the latest regulation is that anyone, regardless of age, in a boat powered by a tiller steered engine must be weating an approved PFD when in motion whether it is an inflatable PFD or not.
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Re: Taking inflatable PFDs on airplanes?

In RI, everyone under the age of 13 must be wearing a PFD when the boat is in motion and they are above deck. We always followed it, but many don't.
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