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Thread: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

  1. #1
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    Default serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    go to the two minute mark and ignore the ridiculous electronic music

    when his suit has filled with water, in heavy weather, and he's cold, weak, and tired

    this looked pretty hairy, and there were apparently plenty crew on board to help

    Simpler is better, except when complicated looks really cool.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    It varies wildly from boat to boat and crew to crew.
    Some crews train for it and practice every so often, others are a total ****show.

    I've only ever had to do it once, thankfully with crew that had such practice.
    1. Mainsail down.
    2. Unclip the vang from the base of the mast
    3. Clip the vang-cum-hoist onto the buckle of his PFD-harness
    4. pull pull pull and he was back in the boat.

    Thankfully he was uninjured, hoisting a rag-doll is an entirely different prospect I'm sure.
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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat


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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    I remember a very HOT day with no wind. A guy jumps into the water to cool off, then discovers he has no way to get back on board. We motored over to him and helped.

    When I had my incident back in '06, and my boat had turtled, a friend came along and I could hold on to his boat, but he had no boarding ladder. A large sailboat backed up to me and put their boarding ladder down. The bottom rung was only about 10 inches under the water, and it was impossible to step on it. Sea Tow came along and he had no boarding ladder. I had to climb up his twin outboards.

    I have a folding ladder on my transom. It can be released from the water, and it reaches about two feet under the surface, so it works.

    We frequently are advised, properly, to wear life jackets. That's good advise. It's also a good idea to have a means of getting back on board from the water.

    My dad put a 'step' hole in the rudder for this purpose.
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  5. #5
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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    Had a bad incident a few years ago when a guy kayaking about a mile offshore in cold water flipped over near us. He was mid-200 lbs, fully dressed. We got him in a lifesling, and three of us hauled him in. That's one of the few pieces of MOB gear that seems to work well, but it's still not easy.

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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    My nightmare........Only had to do it once - quite a light young woman, overboard from another boat. Classic method - circled with a lifting strop on a floating line, attached main halliard and winched. She was conscious and not too cold and the sea was calm, so could help herself once she was able to get a foot on the boarding ladder, which slots securely over the side, not the stern. I also have a parbuckling thingy on board for horizontal lifting, but never had to use it.

    A few years ago a friend returned to his mooring singlehanded in his little 21 footer. Picking up his mooring at the entrance to a small creek leading to a marina. Slipped and fell overboard. Wearing a lifejacket, thankfully, but the tide had turned and was drifting both him and his boat (not attached to each other) seawards.

    Another boat approached, heading in to the marina. He hailed them and asked them to help. Answer? Oh, sorry, we can't stop or we will miss the tide over the marina cill!!!!!!!!! I still can't quite believe it, but he's a truthful man. Fortunately he was able to get the boat and, somehow, haul himself aboard (very low freeboard) As for the skipper of the other boat - push him overboard and hold him down with the boathook until the bubbles stop..........?
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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    Dousing the sails would be my first move. Then I would deploy the boarding ladder shown bolted to the transom.

    Kevin
    There are two kinds of boaters: those who have run aground, and those who lie about it.

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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    Kevin, those are two things that vary wildly from boat to boat.
    Some sailboats, particularly racing boats, will get to the guy much faster under sail than under power in heavy weather.
    On a lot of sailboats, particularly in heavy weather, the transom will be rising and falling and generally a bad place to be attempting a reboard. That ladder is for use at anchor.
    No adversary is worse than bad advice.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    ^
    BS

    1. Now way its easier to pull someone aboard with the boat moving. One word: physics.

    2. Sure the ladder is for calm water, but at least the guy could use his legs and help himself.

    The "problem" in the op is that instead of boating, they are racing. Their priorities are not right.

    Kevin
    There are two kinds of boaters: those who have run aground, and those who lie about it.

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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    I've never had to do it, but I suspect I'd use one of the falls from my davits.... unclip it from the inflatable, and use the carabiner attached to the bottom block to connect to the person's life vest, then haul him up (6:1 block and tackle arrangement) onto the stern platform.

    This is one of those cases where having a stern platform is an advantage.
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  11. #11
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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    I didn't say don't stop the boat, just that dousing the sails isn't always the best first move.

    Ladder... legs... Maybe. In my experience with such ladders, by the time you're in a position to have your legs help you, you're more than halfway aboard anyway. Varies boat to boat.
    No adversary is worse than bad advice.

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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    1.) Have equipment suited to your boat

    2.) Make a plan

    3.) Instruct everyone on board about using the equipment and following the plan

    4.) Practice

    5.) Practice again

    6.) Practice some more
    Hope for the best, but plan for the worst.

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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    Lots of dips and pull ups and wear your PFD and a lifeline.

    In light weather I would lash a life line and tie myself off and fall off the back of Tidbit to cool off and take a swim. The most unnerving feeling was to see your boat ghost away in the lightest of breeze and know no matter how accomplished a swimmer you were you could never hope to catch up. Then after the slack played out you would get the reassuring tug of the lifeline and be pulled along.

    When you wanted to get back aboard just pull the lifeline and grab the freeboard pull up and climb back to the helm. Tidbit had a low freeboard but I've pulled myself up larger vessels.
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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    If completely overboard, assign one person to always keep pointing at the victim, not to do anything else. This is VERY important.

    Turn boat around. Then haul MOB aboard - sling/rope loop and halyard, sling/rope loop and raw manpower, sling and winch etc.


    - On KATE we had a dinghy being towed and put a fellow crew member in it.
    MOB was conscious so we sailed (under reduced sail) past him turned into wind and dropped sails. Crew in inflatable and the MOB hauled on rope and got MOB alongside inflatable and hauled him in.
    Water temperature (78F+) was not a factor in the short time it took.

    It would have been significantly different if the MOB was unconscious.
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  15. #15
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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    Just went through this exact training exercise for both the commercial ferry service that I regularly work at and the crew prepsign off for the summer transpac (still working wife so I can go!)

    one crew follows with pointing figure and if possible immediately deploying life ring in direction without hitting overboarder. A second crew if there is one guides the helmsman/shipper to location of ring and person in water. A practice of starboard pick up for most boats. If the sides are low or boat is small, a large bowline on a secured is dropped in water for hoist via block and tackle or via a block and winch. If the boat is large or commercial - a Jason's cradle is deployed. Never ever try to pull a unsecured person out of the water with own physical force - you most likely will injure yourself. Taking an extra minute to keep everyone safe will often be wisest course.

    Last year, we picked up 8 windsurfers and kite boarders who where drifting out under the golden gate when I was aboard for our bay cruises. 6 of the 8 were retrieved with the cradle. 2 where hosted by block and tackle only. 3 lost thier kites. We are always cautious about the rigging. Most times we got everything. We also stuck around twice from jumpers off the golden gate bridge who we saw jump and hit the water buts bodies never surfaced. We had the block and tackle out and the cradle prepared. One of us dons a life vest just in case with another life vest for the person in water. In a related story - Another boat from our fleet used a Jason's cradle to retrieve a jumper who survived the fall.
    Last edited by Ted Hoppe; 04-09-2018 at 03:39 PM.
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  16. #16
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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    We took a 2 day Safety at Sea course on Bainbridge Island a couple of weeks ago. In the PNW, most boats carry the LifeSling. We did-in-the-water exercises. Practice is the key.


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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    How about the guy who finally got tired and let got. Neither he nor anyone else were wearing PFDs. Looked like they relied on others to retrieve him too and just kept going.
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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    The video doesn't run long enough to conclude that they just kept going. To me it looked like a lot of people volunteered for "find and point at the MOB" duty, leaving nobody for "drop the spinnaker and get the boat turned around" duty.

    Their race effectively ended when he let go, nothing to be gained by continuing on.
    No adversary is worse than bad advice.

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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    Quote Originally Posted by Breakaway View Post
    ^
    BS

    1. Now way its easier to pull someone aboard with the boat moving. One word: physics.

    2. Sure the ladder is for calm water, but at least the guy could use his legs and help himself.

    The "problem" in the op is that instead of boating, they are racing. Their priorities are not right.

    Kevin
    Not BS at all, and I have NEVER heard of a single racer who does not put getting a MOB back aboard as the highest priority (unless it's a hot day and it's all in fun).

    No one said it's easier to get someone back aboard a moving boat. The point was that many boats can get back just as quickly (or faster) under sail much of the time. Why stuff around dropping sails when you could be getting back to the MOB under sail?

    Secondly, the US Sailing or Lifesling summaries of MOB incidents show an enormous number of incidents were lines went over the side and round the prop during MOB incidents, sometimes crippling the boat before they got back to the MOB. Why risk that if you can get back just as fast and accurately under sail?

    If your issue in the OP is the first still, with the guy hanging off the back of the J/24, what do you want them to do? The jib has already come down - the engine is down below. Do you want them to sit around and drop the main, get the outboard out of the cabin and onto the transom and then motor back to the MOB, or do you want them to luff as they are doing? Bear in mind it's a summer day on Sydney Harbour and the man hanging on has his head out of the water and could well be saying "I'm OK, just stop the boat". Plenty of us can hang onto a moving boat for a long time.

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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    Quote Originally Posted by John of Phoenix View Post
    How about the guy who finally got tired and let got. Neither he nor anyone else were wearing PFDs. Looked like they relied on others to retrieve him too and just kept going.
    If so, they weren't racing since that means a DSQ.

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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    Quote Originally Posted by Figment View Post
    I didn't say don't stop the boat, just that dousing the sails isn't always the best first move.

    Ladder... legs... Maybe. In my experience with such ladders, by the time you're in a position to have your legs help you, you're more than halfway aboard anyway. Varies boat to boat.
    Coming from a very warm-water climate where we spend a lot of time swimming off boats, and being a tightwad who scrubs rather than anti-fouls, one thing that really strikes me is that you don't need to get your foot on a ladder or a gunwale, as is often said or implied. If you can get your knee up to the ladder rung or gunwale, the "hollow" under your kneecap is a perfectly adequate way of giving you enough grip to lift yourself out. You can also swing the leg sideways, yet most people seem to ignore that. You can also get a reasonable "grip" under your ribcage.

    My wife gets up the side of the J/36 by herself after swimming. It's the same hull and freeboard as the better known J/35 so while it's not particularly high by modern standards, it's higher than most small yachts. We tend to get ourselves back aboard without using the stern ladder to keep in practise.

    Dinghy racing, water skiing and swimming off yachts seems to indicate that being able to get back aboard is a physical skill and knack that can be much easier than most people think IF you practise it.

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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    To get someone back into the boat, you round up and luff sails.

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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    I check out my recovery skills from time to time. Sometimes it is an accident, like when my dinghy painter parts, and sometimes it is intentional like I through a beer can or toy over and recover it.... by the way I never, don't recover it, ....it just depends on how long it takes me. I have never had someone go over unintentionally, except at anchor. This is a lot of fun with kids....... it is also good exercise. oh and I always do it under sail, mainly because I never seem to do the exercise when under power... maybe I need to have a go at that....
    Getting someone on board is another problem. My freeload is quite low and I have a boarding ladder/step thing handy all the time. I have spare rope to make a sling, easily available in cockpit lockers, and adrenaline is a good thing. The rudder also has two steps on it.
    Last edited by gilberj; 04-09-2018 at 09:14 PM.

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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    In worst case scenario with a boat with high sheer and MOB unable to climb, you use the boom as a lifting hoist with a harness. Requires practice. I have not done it but know someone that took a class and said it was extremely instructional and glad he did it, and this was from an ex navy man with a lot of sailing experience.
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    Cool Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    Like This.....


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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    /\ That's actually really interesting; I must try it but it would seem to be limited to craft with quite low freeboard. Thanks.

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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Figment View Post
    I didn't say don't stop the boat, just that dousing the sails isn't always the best first move.

    Ladder... legs... Maybe. In my experience with such ladders, by the time you're in a position to have your legs help you, you're more than halfway aboard anyway. Varies boat to boat.


    Understood. I apologize if my comment appeared brash and targeted. It was not my intention, Fig.

    The older i get the more i realize how lucky i have been to get sway with my cavalier attitude about boats and water. I take things much mote seriously now, and treat any unplanned splash into the water as life threatening.

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    There are two kinds of boaters: those who have run aground, and those who lie about it.

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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    Quote Originally Posted by Breakaway View Post
    Dousing the sails would be my first move. Then I would deploy the boarding ladder shown bolted to the transom.

    Kevin
    Depends on the sea state. I've heard of people being hurt badly by getting hit on the head by the stern as it slammed down.

  29. #29
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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    Depends on the sea state. I've heard of people being hurt badly by getting hit on the head by the stern as it slammed down.
    Agreed.There's no all-purpose answer. Those seeking a guarantee should buy toasters not boats. The thing is: what's the best chance for survival of the PIW?

    Once you're in the water, the number of ways you can die or get hurt goes up by a lot.

    Kevin
    There are two kinds of boaters: those who have run aground, and those who lie about it.

  30. #30
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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob (oh, THAT Bob) View Post
    In worst case scenario with a boat with high sheer and MOB unable to climb, you use the boom as a lifting hoist with a harness. Requires practice. I have not done it but know someone that took a class and said it was extremely instructional and glad he did it, and this was from an ex navy man with a lot of sailing experience.
    The incident I related used a sling designed to do just that. The problem is that rigging lifting tackle to the boom isn't all that easy, particularly when the boat is rolling. I think the main point is a relatively way of securing the MOB with a way to get a handhold. Two people on board seemed enough to lift him even without tackle, at least enough to get him back onboard. Might also note that if the boat remains underway, even slowly, it can easily drag the MOB under and drown him just as he is coming on board.

  31. #31
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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    Quote Originally Posted by johnw View Post
    Depends on the sea state. I've heard of people being hurt badly by getting hit on the head by the stern as it slammed down.
    Any sailboat with overhang--common on older boats--is extremely dangerous to people in the water at the stern. Also, in a seaway, the boat's motion up and down is least at the center of the hull, alongside.

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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    Tow an inflatable.
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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    Volvo Ocean Race Man Overboard recovery in January.


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    Default Re: serious question, how do you get a guy back in the boat

    Quote Originally Posted by Breakaway View Post
    Dousing the sails would be my first move. Then I would deploy the boarding ladder shown bolted to the transom.

    Kevin
    It is IMPORTANT that the boarding ladder extends far enough into the water so the person in the water can get a foot on the lowest step. When I was in the water a lovely, large sailboat doused the sails and motored over. They back up to me with their transom boarding ladder down. The lowest step was barely under the water's surface, and I could not get a foot onto it.

    When Sea Tow arrived, I'd been in the water for quite some time, and they had no boarding ladder. I was able to climb up his twin outboards and get on board his boat.
    How do we form a mutiny? Our new captain is navigating poorly.

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