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Maybe I missed it here? Sail Magazine had a contributor write an article that proposed that the US needed to have a mandatory PFD law. Not just minors, everyone aboard. Just like mandatory motorcycle helmet laws. I won't give my opinion, I'm here just to stir things up. Is this a good place to have a rational discussion of the topic? Dave G
 

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I read that piece just yesterday. We've had discussions on PFD use on this forum before, but it looks like time for a new one.

In the article, he cites just under 4,000 boating deaths in the US since 2005 with 3% of those on sail boats. 3% of four thousand is 120. Divide by the eight years of stats and we roughly have 15 sailing deaths per year. Have no idea how many of these 15 people would have lived had they been wearing a PFD. For all we know, many of them were wearing PFDs.

All in all, I would hate to see mandatory PFD legislation so that we can save from zero to 15 sailors a year. If the author is so bent out of shape about "if we can save just one life" then why doesn't he advocate a ban against boating altogether. After all, the we save hundreds of lives a year if we did that.
 

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"if we can save just one life" then why doesn't he advocate a ban against boating altogether. After all, the we save hundreds of lives a year if we did that.
Wait; that's coming.

Won't be able to cross oceans unless you are in a steel sub straped in; according to some.

Maybe we should ban cars!
 

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Picture a young couple trying to make love in their bunks, in an anchorage at night, while wearing PFD's . A comedy skit on that could just kill the idea quickly. Where are the comedians? We need your help! If any of you know any well known professional comedians, on popular TV shows, could you please suggest this to them?
 
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We have that stupid law here in Pa by calender. It would make more since to me if it were something like water temp + air temp must be > 110 degrees to not wear one. I don't believe in helmet laws, seatbelt laws etc but I do believe in helmets and seat belts. You can not idiot proof anything; God just builds a better idiot! Governments have been messing with Darwinian Law so long we have too many idiots making more idiot babies. I see people every day who's parents and grandparents should of been kicked out of the gene pool.
 

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Swab
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I read it. Wanted to slug the guy.

Why is it that some people believe they need someone else to think for them all the time?
No, no, no. They do not think they need someone to think for THEM. They think that THEY need to do the thinking for YOU. Because, of course, they are sooooo much smarter. Obviously.:rolleyes:
 

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cruising all I can
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seat belts, helmet, safety glasses, safety shields, safety shoes,safety zones, safety officers, safety first, safety last, child safety seats, safety glass,and a never ending supply of safety products and policies available. And all tied to a potential discount on your insurance if you take the safety course.
Got your boater safety card? did you buy enough insurance?
Well then,your good to go,you are safe and if you've bought enough insurance everyone around you is safe too!
as long as they buy insurance of course.
now, don't worry if you actually know anything about sailing, you're "covered " so you're "safe" and responsible.
 

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By the time I was 16, I'd commercial fished from Mexico to the Aleutians, good weather and bad. No child labor law enforcement, no OSHA, no child welfare case workers and nobody aboard cared one little hoot how old I was as long as I did my job.
I not only survived without the interference of all those government agencies; I thrived. I learned a trade and I learned that hard work wouldn't kill me.
Can the same be said by those raised under the nanny government that exists today? "Everybody is a winner and gets a trophy, just for participating." Yeah, that'll prepare kids for the real world out there.
One of the greatest pleasures about cruising outside US waters is that the governments of the countries we visit consider us adults, responsible for our own actions. They do not mandate things like pfd's, anchors, oars, fire extinguishers in our multi-chamber inflatable dinghies (or any dink, for that matter). No water LEO's running around writing stupid tickets (for local revenue enhancement, not our safety), and doing safety checks on our boats. No BWI's, with penalties that cross over to our driver's licenses and screw up our lives for years.
I'm suspect that should mandatory pfd laws come into effect in the US and I ever return there, I will be paying a lot of fines, because I will not wear one of those things.
 

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I feel the same as I do about seat belt laws...it is a ridiculous power/money grab by an over-reaching nanny state
 

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I am, or have been a motorcyclist. 99% of the time, I wore a full face helmet. For the 1% when I did not wear a helmet, I was either riding off road, and on very few occasions on the street. Local LEO could never make me wear a helmet when off road, so forget that. On the road; it was a short spin at under 20 in Key West to get to the center of town, and once on the highway. For the short spin, it was frankly too damn hot to don a helmet. On the highway, I pulled over after a mile, and put the helmet on. I hated the wind noise, the bugs in my face, and the whole experience. Because I was a rational mature adult, I made a rational decision about what was safe, and appropriate for me at that time. I would never take a passenger with out a helmet, or a leather jacket, because they would be the one to pay if I did something stupid (and I've done a lot of stupid things).

I believe that PFDs deserve the same treatment. Let responsible, mature adults decide what is appropriate, and let them be responsible for the consequences. I further believe that there is NO WAY that the gummint, is going to force John Kerry, or George Bush to wear a PFD if they don't want to. For children under 18, and anyone operating a PWC, I believe that PFDs are appropriate anytime that you are in an open cockpit.
 

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I'm curious why most people diss mandatory safety gear, yet argue vehemently to make insurance a necessity? They are both about mitigating risk. If you diss mandatory life jackets, I hope you also agree insurance is also optional.

BTW I agree it is ludicrous to demand lifejackets be worn all the time. Just like I think most safety gear should be optional. That said, I actually do wear my lifejackets most of the time, but I currently sail the cold waters of Lake Superior. We're always fully clothed, so the lifejacket is not even noticed.


Why go fast, when you can go slow
 

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fortunately, insurance is optional. at least until the insurance lobbyists can whip up enough fear into the population that it makes a good reelection issue for one of their paid for candidates.
It's the FEAR mentality that is sweeping the nation. And insurance offer a false sense of security. And,in my opinion so does all the safety items. not saying a helmet, a pfd,or a eperb or whatever is useless, it just that if you're so scared that you would not go without a pile of these things aboard, maybe you're too scared and should not go.
ok,I gotta get back in my safe room I think I heard something outside! !! never mind it was just the security dogs barking ....at what? ? .. I'm scared better dial 911..too scared to own a weapon ..
 

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fortunately, insurance is optional. at least until the insurance lobbyists can whip up enough fear into the population that it makes a good reelection issue for one of their paid for candidates.
It's the FEAR mentality that is sweeping the nation. And insurance offer a false sense of security. And,in my opinion so does all the safety items. not saying a helmet, a pfd,or a eperb or whatever is useless, it just that if you're so scared that you would not go without a pile of these things aboard, maybe you're too scared and should not go.
ok,I gotta get back in my safe room I think I heard something outside! !! never mind it was just the security dogs barking ....at what? ? .. I'm scared better dial 911..too scared to own a weapon ..
You say people who carry safety gear are SCARED? That's BS, they're PREPARED.

I think you're sounding a little paranoid here.

So tell me, if your boat did significant damage (say $100,000) to someone else's boat or dock, would you cut and run, or would you pay up? How would you come up with the money?
 

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You say people who carry safety gear are SCARED? That's BS, they're PREPARED.

I think you're sounding a little paranoid here.

So tell me, if your boat did significant damage (say $100,000) to someone else's boat or dock, would you cut and run, or would you pay up? How would you come up with the money?
I don't live in "what if land" therefore "what if" I'm a millionaire.
"what if" I go ashore buy a winning lottery ticket and buy every boat in the anchorage.
"what if" your fully insured boat slams into mine and kills my child?
"what if" ,no that's not fear mongering.
As I stated in numerous threads,YOU can buy all the insurance YOU want, for whatever reasons you Dean appropriate.
I don't want it,don't need it and won't get any.
and before you start talking about how you don't want me near your boat - the feeling is mutual. I've seen how all y'all insured, scared boaters operate.
33years boating no "what it's" involving anyone but me.
"what if" it never happened, cuz I don't have my head up my A S S.
This is the real world, get real.
 

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I read that editorial last week and felt it was severely lacking in thought and reason.

I think a compelling argument could be made for some level of mandatory PFD usage--as it is, we already have that--but this guy has failed by simply arguing that PFDs should be worn always. Period. Without accounting for anchoring, sleeping, tied to a dock, size of boat....

Let's hope that guys like this continue to be the voice for mandatory PFD usage, because I am fairly certain that he will get nowhere until he fine tunes his argument just a bit.
 

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I don't live in "what if land" therefore "what if" I'm a millionaire.
"what if" I go ashore buy a winning lottery ticket and buy every boat in the anchorage.
"what if" your fully insured boat slams into mine and kills my child?
"what if" ,no that's not fear mongering.
As I stated in numerous threads,YOU can buy all the insurance YOU want, for whatever reasons you Dean appropriate.
I don't want it,don't need it and won't get any.
and before you start talking about how you don't want me near your boat - the feeling is mutual. I've seen how all y'all insured, scared boaters operate.
33years boating no "what it's" involving anyone but me.
"what if" it never happened, cuz I don't have my head up my A S S.
This is the real world, get real.
Lame argument.

"What if" I fall overboard? I wear a PFD. That's being prepared, not being scared.

"What if" I'm offshore and need a rescue? I have a PLB or EPIRB. (Hypothetical, since I don't sail offshore and therefore don't have these things.) That's being prepared, not being scared.

"What if" my boat does damage to someone else's property? I have liability insurance to cover damages that exceed my means to pay. That's being prepared, not being scared.

So based on your refusal to consider "what if" questions like whether you would accept responsibility for any damage your boat causes, shall I assume that you would cut and run?
 
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