Boat accident separation point


Well-Known Member
These people were very lucky someone was around. Another reason PFD's should be mandatory. No one steps on to my boat without one. Nice work Fisherf.

Mako 22

Well-Known Member
That could have turned bad real fast. A thanks to the Whale Watching boat and fast thinking crew.

Over the years I have lost 4 friends out in the Straits. Only 2 bodies recovered because the two gents knew they were in trouble and tied themselves to the boat. The boat was found capsized with the two bodies tied. The other boat and crew was never found.

Both were small boats (under 15 feet) and rough water as a result of a west wind against the outgoing tide.

As all know, our cold water is a killer!

I have a few unbreakable rules for my boat:

You must wear a PFD.

No alcohol.

No drugs.

No smokes.

Violate any one and you stay on the dock.

Franko Manini

Well-Known Member
I agree with all the above posts, and there are a few great reminders here:
  • PDFs all the time, every time, for everyone.
  • Our fellow boaters are looking out for each other (which is AWESOME).
  • Our passengers (even the young ones) should know how to use the radio to get help and start/stop the motors on our boats.
From the first day I brought my kids on board, we practiced starting and stopping the main and kicker, turning the boat, man overboard, finding our position (using the handheld GPS and the sounder), and radio use. Whenever we're on the water with other boats we know, I get the kids to send and receive a few radio calls between boats. They need to be comfortable doing all of these things, but the basics are turn off the motor and call for help.

Personally, I've always been concerned with falling off the boat while I'm rigging gear and the kicker is running. I can just imagine how I would feel to pop up in my PDF and look over my shoulder to see my kids helplessly trolling off in the boat.

Not to derail the thread, but what do people do to prevent falling off under troll when you're fishing by yourself? Imagine this, you go lean over to grab something, get hit by a wake and find yourself in the drink watching your boat troll off... Yikes.


Active Member
Update: the father of the children came to get his boat from our dock today, and we got the real story from him. It wasn't actually the prawn trap getting pulled up that caused the throttle to get bumped, the two year old was sitting on the fathers lap, and he was moving around a bit, and he bumped the throtel. then the boat tipped hard one way, and then tipped hard the other way and slingshoted the 2 yearold and the dad and brother out. The first thing he did when he went to pick up his boat was put on a pfd and clipped on his kill cord.
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Active Member
Dogbreath ~ thanks for that. I've just ordered one - [they are damned expensive]. I fish alone a a lot and have often thought about how easy it might be to go over the side when reaching over the side for any number of reasons then watching the boat troll away as i bob around in my expensive auto inflate pfd.
I'll post a report when I get it installed and the boat back in the water in a few weeks.


Well-Known Member
Another reason PFD's should be mandatory. No one steps on to my boat without one. Nice work Fisherf.
No offense, but I think we already have enough well intentioned regulations intruding into our personal lives. When it comes to children, I am in full agreement. Children should always wear safety vests. As an adult I think I am experienced enough to know when the situation requires wearing one. I have been operating an outboard powered boat alone on the water since before I was even a teenager. So, I have over 40 years of experience operating a power driven vessel. No one is ever going to tell me I have to wear a PFD at all times on my own boat and expect me to comply. I am over 300 lbs and I would never find any vest that was large enough and comfortable enough to wear full time. Aside from the fact, even if there was one comfortable enough to wear in my size it would make me sweat uncomfortably in warmer weather, so forget it.

What rules you want to enforce on your own boat is entirely up to your own judgement. Please don't try to make everything in the world reduced to the lowest common denominator. Newer inexperienced boaters might be well advised to wear a PFD full time. I believe I have enough common sense and experience to know when the situation dictates the use of a PFD. Please don't presume to tell me what is best for me. This mentality has become become a runaway industry in Canada, with ever increading regulation of our daily lives. Where does it end is the question I have to ask? Are we all going to end up having to wear helmets and full body suits just leave our own homes soon just in case the sky falls?

I do not take safety lightly, and I believe safety on the water should be everyone's concern. You can't regulate common sense, and all the safety equipment in the world won't necessarily prevent a tragedy from occurring.

Educate yourself on good boating and safety practices and keep yourself safe out there. Don't expect regulation to accomplish that.

spring time

Well-Known Member
I'm with you big guy I have been on the water since I've been ten(yes wearing a life jacket) so 30 some years commercial fished for twenty. If they make pfd's mandatory then so should toilets more guys drown from peeing over the side of a boat.
I think i mentionned this before, but i tie a length of rope that allows me to move around the boat freely. Tie that to a stern cleat, add a loop to the end so i can attach a carabiner to my pfd or belt loop, and attach the killcord to a second loop on the rope with enough distance so when taught the kill cord pulls. Basically a really long kill cord that will tow me if i go over.


Crew Member
I fish solo or with my 10 year old more often than with an adult. I have a 22' hewescraft OP. Besides teaching him how to run a boat and use the radio, I keep an epirb onboard that he knows how to enable, but also a PLB tucked into my mustang auto inflating PFD so I can activate it from the water. They cost $200 and fit neatly in the little zipper pouch where the CO2 canister is accessed. You never know it's even there.


Active Member
That is cool. I wanted to wire a seperate kill switch onto the stern, but that would have been such a pain. So much more elegant. Has anyone used these on here?
Yes and it works perfectly. I hardwired the home unit on the dash, and keep fresh batteries in the lanyard. Really nice little unit and piece of mind.