As we start the sailing season, it’s a good time to think about safety at the club.
Safety on the Docks
Safety on the docks is a function of many measures. If someone falls in the water, boarding ladders are located between each pair of slips. Safety stations with life rings and retrieval hooks are located at regular intervals. Do you know the location of the one closest to your slip?
The docks have to be kept clear to allow safe access for everyone:
- Boats should be moored so that bow pulpits do not extend over the docks.
- Mooring lines, water hoses and power cables must be arranged so that they do not encroach on the free movement of people and carts on the docks.
- Personal property should never be stored on the docks.
- Remember, not everyone is as nimble as you are, especially when driving a cart or lugging a box of supplies to the boat.
A few extra cautions:
- Under wet conditions, the deck planks that were replaced in the last few years are much more slippery than the older, weathered boards. Be careful when it rains and remind your guests too.
- During the next few weeks there will ofter be times when virtually nobody is on the docks. If you have to go to your boat, use the buddy system. If that’s not possible, let someone at the office or the OOD desk know you are out there and check-in when you return. You might consider wearing a life jacket too.
The docks are maintained and repaired by our volunteer dock committee headed by Don Williams. They work many hours all season but they need your help to identify unsafe conditions or areas that need repair. Don can be reached at email@example.com
Safety in the Air
Going to the top of a mast is often a spur of the moment activity and safety can be easily overlooked. Sailors should remember that what goes up can come down quickly – without warning. Always have someone tail the halyard at the winch, and always have another set of hands on a second halyard on a second winch.
Some climb up the white crane but a safety harness will ensure that a slip is not a fall:
- As you go up, loop your harness cable over a horizontal bar and then on to the hoist cable.
- As you rise, stop to reset the safety cable and then climb again. This is only a slight inconvenience but it can be a life saver.
- You can go up on a bosun’s chair using the white crane too.
- A safety harness hooked directly to the crane cable will ensure that you can’t fall out of the chair.
We had a situation this spring of a sailor painting the bottom of his boat without safety glasses. A drop of VC-17 flipped into his eye and caused damage to his cornea. Fortunately, after his call for help, other members led him to the Eyeball Washout Station in the laundry room and damage was minimized. He went to the hospital for further treatment and is fully recovered, but this accident could have been averted with the use of safety glasses. Do you have a safety glasses on your boat?
The Eyeball Washout Station is an attachment to the faucets on the sink beside the laundry machines. To use it, flip the red covers off the nozzles, pull and hold the button between the nozzles and turn on the water slowly. There is another was Eyeball Washout Station inside the kitchen.
Safety Committee Chairman