Page 68

Spouse Overboard By Susan Gateley

“Man overboard” must be some of the scariest words in all of sailing vocabulary.

T

hankfully, I have never seen a crewmember fall off a boat (though I have rescued a couple of cats). I fell off my daysailer once when a hiking strap broke—my brother and sister were sitting in the boat laughing their heads off when I came up for air. And I jumped off a sailing dinghy rather than capsize it after I carelessly stepped aboard it dockside. That was my first and only experience swimming in rain gear and shoes without a PFD, and I was surprised how difficult that was. I sailed solo for over 20 years and saw Raising a person using the Life Sling. The jib halyard is run aft to a winch. little point in MOB recovery drills. Then I returned, but it was not so good for a small, full-keel twomarried another sailor. Suddenly I became intensely intermaster sailed solo. And I learned that we were somehow ested in the subject. If he went overboard, I wanted him leaving something out when we tried to follow the direcback! Over the years our marriage endured and I continued tions printed on the Life Sling cover. (The secret, it turns to want him back. We did calm-weather drills to practice out, is to make elliptical turns, not nice round donuts returning to the person and or floating object in the water, around the victim while dragging the floatation sling and we tested four different recovery methods for getting astern). each other back on the boat. (Neither of us is exactly superI concluded that each boat design behaves a bit differfit. My 60-plus-year-old back is problematic, and a childently, and each sailing couple has different abilities and hood bout with polio left my spouse—who weighs 220 physical capacities, so you should work out your own propounds to my 140—with only one fully functional arm). I learned a few things. Like the written descriptions, YouTube videos and Internet articles on crew/man overboard situations are both helpful and confusing. I learned about our boat’s maneuvering abilities and limitations. I learned about the “Quick Stop” method taught by the various sailing schools. It worked well in moderate winds with Drop in replacements for Beneteau, Catalina & our fin keelboat keeping me close to the “victim” as I

LED LIGHTS Hunter ceiling, reading and navigation lights Full product information at

www.cruisingsolutions.com

DockSide Radio Specializing in Marine SSB Sailmail / Airmail / Winlink sailmail@docksideradio.com www.docksideradio.com Ph: 941.661.4498 Radios & Modems in Stock

— Pactor Modem Sales — — Authorized Icom Dealer — 66 December 2015

SOUTHWINDS

FCC Marine Radio Licenses MMSI Number Management SSB/Sailmail Training Troubleshooting

COST EFFECTIVE EQUIPMENT FOR LIFE UNDER SAIL

Gary Jensen

800-460-7451

Owner, FCC-Licensed Technician

www.southwindsmagazine.com

Southwinds December 2015  

A free, printed sailing magazine reporting on sailing in the southeast U.S: Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Missi...

Southwinds December 2015  

A free, printed sailing magazine reporting on sailing in the southeast U.S: Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Missi...