Monday, May 9, 2016
We have a Safety Inspection coming up, and one of the things that the inspector is going to check is our Personal Flotation Devices (PFD). Here's mine.
It is "self inflatable". If it gets (really) wet, or if I pull the release handle, a compressed gas cartridge is punctured and the PFD is inflated. There is also a tube to blow it up (or keep it inflated).
One side of the PFD above is opened up to show the inflation tube, a strobe light, whistle, and signaling mirror. In the right upper corner of the picture is a bag containing "Thigh Straps" to be used with the PFD. Years of experience with PFDs have shown that they can otherwise slip off over the person's head, especially if the person is unconscious.
In the middle on the right is a spare gas cartridge in case the one inside the PDF is set off by accident.
At the bottom of the picture is a tether. This particular PFD is more strongly constructed than average so that it also serves as a safety harness. Normally one end of the tether is clipped onto the PFD and the other end is clipped to the boat. This tether has two clip-on straps, a short one and a long one. Some people also carry a personal "Emergency Position Indicating RadioBeacon" (EPIRB). The boat has one of these. They can be used to signal to a satellite that you need help, and where you are located.