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Got to thinking about this last night and came to the same conclusion as PDQ. As he said, tying everything together and to the boat is not a good idea. Not only does it require unlikely supersonic reaction times from both the crew and the MOB, but if the MOB pole is tied to the boat, what happens when it gets to the end of its tether? It starts to drag along behind the boat. It is therefore no longer marking where the MOB is likely to be. It is marking someplace that the boat was a little while ago. This is not going to help locate the MOB so you can use the Lifesling.
 

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Yea, most don't recover at all.:oops:

Ouch.

I have never heard stats to recreational sailboats. I would bet that cruising and off-shore are diffrent from in-shore racing (where people fall of or capsize more often, the weather is not bad, and there are many boats to help). There is a huge difference in seriousness between falling off a sport boat racing around the cans, and falling off a short-handed cruising boat at night.
 

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I do not like the reach-reach procedure in the video. When he turns to a broad reach he is sailing downwind from the MOB; when he make the next turn he is still on a reach and remains downwind, likely slipping further downwind without a jib. Especially in a strong wind that will make it very difficult to get alongside the MOB. I prefer an almost immediate tack, backwinding the genoa. You are then fairly close to the MOB, and approximately heaved to. You can then adjust your sails to move close by and deal with the position of the MOB. In all but unusual circumstances, the Reach-Reach video also omits the important step of calling Mayday.

The virtue of the lifesling as compared with a loose PFD or horseshoe is twofold. It is easy to get on in the water, and it is very helfpul for getting the MOB close in to the boat, even if he can be of limited help. Throwing it over linked to the pole, like the OP suggests, negates this value. I always have cockpit cushions and a horseshoe readily available, and I tell the crew to throw several items the moment the MOB goes over. The more the merrier. This increases the chance of the MOB reaching one, and makes the location more visible. The stats from cruise ships seem irrelevant to cruising sailors. There are no meaningful stats for cruising sailors, because hardly anyone would think of reporting a successful rescue without outside help..
 

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I do not like the reach-reach procedure in the video. When he turns to a broad reach he is sailing downwind from the MOB; when he make the next turn he is still on a reach and remains downwind, likely slipping further downwind without a jib. Especially in a strong wind that will make it very difficult to get alongside the MOB. I prefer an almost immediate tack, backwinding the genoa. You are then fairly close to the MOB, and approximately heaved to. You can then adjust your sails to move close by and deal with the position of the MOB. In all but unusual circumstances, the Reach-Reach video also omits the important step of calling Mayday.
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The video demonstrates successfully returning to the MOB via reach-reach several times, and the procedure worked.

The key to a good MOB recovery technique is one you have practiced and you know works for you and for your SO.

.As a member of a well-organized racing team, I've often practiced the "quick stop" MOB. As an instructor I practice the figure-8 MOB several hundred times a summer. But if you sail primarily with a SO, you need a simple recovery program that minimizes decision making and confusion, and I find the "reach-reach" is the procedure that a SO can be expected to learn and actually perform. And early each season, when your SO is driving, you need to several times toss a cushion overboard, announce "man overboard" and freshen the memory..

"I prefer an almost immediate tack, backwinding the genoa", next time you're out sailing, get on a run with the SO driving then toss a cushion overboard, and see how long it takes to get back to it.

Finally I would think a Mayday call, is a judgement decision based on circumstances. And if the SO is the only person onboard, your likely better off having the recovery proceed than leaving the wheel to start a five minute conversation with the USCG.
 

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The best procedure is the one you practice.

I've read many "mine is the way" speeches, which always assume all boat handle the same and have the same crew. For example, many boats really can't heave to with any level of control. Some boats can circle just by laying over the wheel, many cannot. What if you are already overpowered (which may be related to you situation)?

I've had several boats, and I do MOB pickups differently with each one. The only thing that never works is rushing. Mark the MOB, slow down, don't loose track of the MOB in the midst of bungled procedures, and focus on getting it right the FIRST time, not as fast as possible. If you get them on the first pass, have faith that will be fast enough. It will be faster than three rushed, bungled passes.
 

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We carry a life sling and really need to get a MOB pole.

Mostly it is just the Wife and I. I figure if I go over I am dead, period.

With this in mind heres what we have done.
Added a chest high lifeline from shrouds back to arch.
From shrouds forward there are inboard jacklines with a short permanetly attached tether.
You can go from stern to stem with inly one move of tether and without ever being unclipped.
If you “go over” you will likely be held above the water.
We have sewn PLBs into our auto-inflate PFD’s.
And added loops for the portable VHF radios.
And added crotch straps so you wont be slipping out of the PFD.
I am redoing my main sheet connection, which is kind of weird, in order to facilitate the main sheet being used to lift the MOB. It will have an Anatal low friction snatch block.
We also have a Gale Rider drogue which can be used to scoop up MOB.

I get the life sling discussion, it is good. It is just my personal opinion the primary focus should made in staying with the boat.
 

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PDQ brings up a good point: each boat is different. What works for one may not be possible with another. We are in the midst of buying a new boat. We know what works with our current boat - QuickStop can get us back to the victim in 45 seconds or less. We will need to see if the new one can work the same way.
 

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Hello,

I plan on buying a rescue sling for my new-to-me boat. On my other boats have used the LifeSling - for no other reason than I saw a lot of LifeSling units on other boats.


Over the years the cover will deteriorate but you can buy a new one for not that much money

Now I'm checking on Defender, and I see this one:

It's $60 (vs $174) and looks just like the LifeSling. I like to save money, but I also want something that will work when I need it. The Lalizas looks just about the same as the LifeSling.

Does anyone have experience the Lalizas? Any comments pro / con?

Thanks,
Barry
I got the Jonbuoy. Had the life sling for years, but now I am cruising shorthanded and our eyes aren’t as good. The Jonbuoy has a pole so you can see it better and looked easier for the victim to climb into and hold onto. It also came with a hard case.
 

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A few thoughts from a multihull and couples sailing perspective. Just some reasons why I would do things differently.
  • Getting to the rail to help the victim takes the helmsman far from the wheel at a critical moment. The Lifesling can be deployed early in the manuver, avoiding the need to leave the helm until contact is established.
  • Most of them don't stop when you heave to. The big main (which cannot be fully eased because of the shrouds) generally keeps them moving slowly forward. Thus, by the time you walk to the rail, you've missed the MOB.
  • Multihulls tend to drift sideways faster when stopped.
  • Rocking and rolling is much less near the transom, some most recoveries take place aft. The bows are crazy in rough weather.
  • Multihull cannot be turned 360 by throwing the wheel over. You'll just start fore reaching on the next tack. The boat won't bear off with the main in. Sails will require adjustments.
  • Multihulls in heavy weather can't just throw the wheel over unless they want to risk capsize and make things much worse. Sails require trimming. If it wasn't extremely heavy weather, you should not have fallen off, since they don't heel much.
  • If using engines, you have the option of putting the engine on the recovery side in neutral.
  • Multihulls (2 engines) maneuver quite well at low speed and with adverse wind directions. You don't need way on to turn the boat. In many cases, training non- or semi-sailors to drop sail and start engines will be more familiar and comfortable for them. With full batten mains in lazy jacks and smaller furling jibs, this takes only seconds.
 

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Don't really understand the point of a MOB pole nowadays. For the same price one can get a DSC/AIS PLB that actually alerts the crew when someone goes overboard, doesn't require the MOB to swim to it and stay with it to be effective, and provides continually updated information on navigation devices to find the MOB.

It is like having a second crew member assisting with the location of the MOB. For those of us sailing as couples, a MOB could occur while one is inside off watch, and without a DSC/AIS PLB, the MOB wouldn't be discovered until the next watch.

Mark
 

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Mark,

Do you have suggestions on those devices?
 

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Thanks Mark.
 

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Hello,

I plan on buying a rescue sling for my new-to-me boat. On my other boats have used the LifeSling - for no other reason than I saw a lot of LifeSling units on other boats.
Not exactly your question. But. These days I must coastal cruise (Great Lakes) single handed. I live by this axiom: "Just don't fall off the boat". Even if tethered the chances of dragging myself in-water on a moving boat to the swim ladder are not good. Actually being tethered may drown me so I don't. I keep an EPIRB strapped to my arm and a portable waterproof handheld radio tied to my belt. Life vest ALWAYS.
 

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Mark,

Do you have suggestions on those devices?
You must have compatible equipment aboard too. Early versions were proprietary, the popular ones now use AIS.
 

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You must have compatible equipment aboard too. Early versions were proprietary, the popular ones now use AIS.
Yes, I was specifically mentioning the DSC/AIS PLB's and not the MOB alert systems. The only compatible equipment required for the DSC/AIS PLB is a DSC equipped radio (any VHF built after 1995 or so) or chartplotter and/or the ability to receive AIS signals.

Mark
 

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Yes, I was specifically mentioning the DSC/AIS PLB's and not the MOB alert systems. The only compatible equipment required for the DSC/AIS PLB is a DSC equipped radio (any VHF built after 1995 or so) or chartplotter and/or the ability to receive AIS signals.

Mark
Those devices all all wonderful for approximate location. There is a big difference between looking down at a screen to maneuver toward a person and looking in the the water for a PIW. Throwing more stuff in the water, including a pole if you have one, makes it a lot easier to see the PIW.
 

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Those devices all all wonderful for approximate location. There is a big difference between looking down at a screen to maneuver toward a person and looking in the the water for a PIW. Throwing more stuff in the water, including a pole if you have one, makes it a lot easier to see the PIW.
Actually, it doesn't. All it does is possibly make it easier to see the stuff you threw in the water. Whether or not that correlates in space with the PIW is a crap shoot. In conditions likely to induce a PIW, it almost never will be correlated.

And if the PIW event happens when nobody else is on deck, then there isn't even any junk in the water to look at because it never got thrown in the water.

A DSC/AIS PLB will immediately sound a holy hellhound alarm that will wake anyone, an immediately send the location of the PIW to every device on board that can accept the data (VHF radio and chartplotter are some common ones, but phones/tablets and other devices also work if there is a basic boat wifi network). This isn't an "approximate location" - it is the exact location of the PIW. Much more exact than thrown debris surrounding the area of the PIW.

But it gets better. The DSC/AIS PLB not only alerts the boat the PIW was previously associated with, it also alerts all other vessels in VHF range that there is a MOB emergency event and the coordinates of the event. It even wakes them from their sleep. So you have already made a call for help from nearby vessels before you even got out of your bunk or reached your MOB pole.

There is simply no downside, and it is better in all ways than the old time "throw junk in the water". It even allows one the distance to bring the boat into a safe recovery platform condition without the risk of losing contact with the PIW.

I'd be interested to know if there has ever been a successful MOB recovery based on the tossing of a pole when the event happened in rough conditions reaching at hull speed under sail. My suspicion is that a MOB pole is a bit of safety theater rather than practical use.

Mark
 

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I did not mean to imply that the AIS system should be replaced by "junk in the water" but as an adjunct. Recently a BoatUS tow captain was able to locate and rescue several victims by throwing "junk in the water" and calculating drift rate and direction. I believe it has value. In daylight, from personal experience, it has been much easier to locate a PIW waving an object well above their head height.
 

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Clearly both approaches have their value. This is not an either/or decision. Two different approaches for 2 different situations, both valid.
 
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