USCG Seeks Input on Engine Cutoff Switches - SailNet Community

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Go Back   SailNet Community > Skills and Seamanship > Seamanship & Navigation
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Seamanship & Navigation Forum devoted to seamanship and navigation topics, including paper and electronic charting tools.


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Old 06-24-2011
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Post USCG Seeks Input on Engine Cutoff Switches

While the reg appears aimed at JetSkis, etc., many of which already have wrist lanyards tied to ignition keys, the ending regulation could be more sweeping than that. It's proposed to apply to all boats under 26 ft. length, which includes a good many inboard-diesel-auxiliary sailboats.

At any rate, the Coast Guard is looking for your opinion on whether the reg on engine-cutoff switches should be changed.

Go to: Federal Register | Installation and Use of Engine Cut-off Switches on Recreational Vessels

It's a safety issue. Time to participate!
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Old 06-24-2011
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safety kill switch

A couple of days ago a 21 year old boat yard worker at a nearby boatyard was delivering an 18 foot outboard powered boat a few miles down the sound. Clearly an experienced guy. It was a calm, beautiful day.

The boat was found under power, and circling a few hundred yards off the beach. So far, the search for him has been unsuccessful. My thoughts with his family, coworkers, and friends.

I admit to not wearing the tether on small power boats and dingys. I would rather we not legislate it, and it seems silly on a 24 foot aux powered sailboat, where you are more likely to fall overboard under sail than power IMHO. But my personal policy on this has changed with regards to smaller power boats and dingys. If I'm solo and it's more than a slow put around the harbor, I'll have the tether on.
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Old 06-24-2011
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You have to go pretty far back < 1995 to find a powerboat with remote controls without one

Not sure when all the small outboards had them ? BUT a long time also
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Old 06-24-2011
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The Govt. doesn't need to protect us from ourselves. The more they regulate small crap like this the more they want to control. Next they will be requiring that you wear a helmet while sailing because you might get hit in the head by the boom.
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Old 06-24-2011
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I've been over the side ONCE without the safety lanyard. I hook up before starting the engine every time now. The memory hasn't faded with the years.
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Old 06-24-2011
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We've got Abracadabra. 30', 8300 lb. sailboat with 30HP Atomic 4. Can make close to 7 kts on flat water w/no wind, pushing the engine harder than we should. I doubt many sailboats with an A4 go much faster. A lanyard would be kinda silly on such a boat.

Then there's Shazaam! We almost named Shazaam! "Goes Like Hell," at the suggestion of a sailing friend after we took him for a ride on her. 18', 2200 lb. open-bow boat with a 4.3L V6 MerCruiser rated at 205HP, I/O drive system. On a newly-broken-in rebuilt engine she's currently able to do a bit more than 45 MPH (39 kts) at 4800 RPM, and she gets there fast. Pops out of the water like a cork and is onto plane almost instantly.

With Shazaam! I wear the tether . Last Saturday, heading back to the launch, about 1' of chop, doing about 33-35 MPH (29-30 kts) I all-of-a-sudden realized I'd not clipped in. Slowed down to just on plane (~ 27 MPH [24 kts]), had The Admiral grab the wheel, clipped-in, and away we went again.

I think not wearing a tether on a go-faster boat is just plain stupid. Yeah, they're an inconvenience. Just about every time I clip in, at some point I go to stand up and find I'm on a leash. But if I ever hit a wave the wrong way while I'm at speed, and I'm not wearing that tether... *shudder*

All that being said: Enough with the legislation to protect us from ourselves, okay?

Jim
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Old 06-25-2011
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Spent enough time on J/24's with the outboard's "shackle" tied back to itself. If the USCG requires shackles on everything under 26', folks are just going to start bypassing more of them.

'scuse me, gotta go run buy up the stock in engine safety switch companies now. I want a piece of this boondoggle!
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