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Melissa & Dave - Adventures at Sea

Apsaras gets some new safety gear

September 6, 2013

Today Melissa installed an SOS Dan Buoy. While holding the drill on board deck a couple of sailors happened by.  One yelled, "Now that's what I like to see.  A woman with power tools!"

This is a MOB (Man Over Board) buoy.  Traditional MOB flags are basically just a flag attached to a long pole that floats in the water.  Idea is that you toss it in the water when someone falls in and then you can return to the location where the person fell overboard.  In any kind of waves people disappear and its hard to locate them again.  The MOB buoy helps because it sticks up several feet above the water.  The new SOS design is super cool.  It’s a package about the size of a box of wine.  You just toss the whole package in the water.  A CO2 cartridge inflates the unit which has flotation for the person in the water to hold on to (like tossing a life ring with the MOB buoy), a whistle for them to blow in case of fog, and a strobe light on top.  We mounted it in the cockpit.  This allows one of us to toss it overboard without having to leave the cockpit.  If someone falls in, you want to hit the MOB button on the navigation system, get the sails down, and get the boat turned around.  Not having to go out on deck to deploy the MOB buoy is hugely advantageous, and there is way less risk that a second person (maybe the only other one still aboard the boat) gets swept overboard too.

Here is a video of the unit being deployed:

Dave also installed a new AIS (Automatic Identification System) receiver.  This is the system that lets us see large ships, what course they are on, etc.  Especially important in the fog to know where the large boats are to be able to avoid them.  This new system lets us see ships that are 50 miles away.

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