Leaving the sinking ship…..a laboratory experiment on yacht crews
We spent a few days at the Hamble School of Yachting to gain the Sea Safety, Sea Survival and First Aid Certificates required by the ARC. In the pictures we are learning to abandon ship, deploy a liferaft, minimise cold shock, manage a casualty, righting, boarding and maintaining a liferaft, and to put the human body into shutdown for longer term survival. Sea Survival, taught by ex-military specialist John, was excellent. All crew attended and the teenagers found it to be a brilliant and rewarding experience. Admittedly they no longer want to go even as far offshore as Bournemouth Pier.
Life inside an 8 man liferaft with a ‘comfortable’ 8 man crew (bouncy castle type floor space allocation of about 2 sqft each) even in the flat calm of a pool is very challenging; what this would be like at night in a bit of weather we never want to know but to have had some practice in ideal conditions. And adding more crew beyond the 8 man design in the event the space is needed would make a tough situation very gruelling.
Our thanks to Fiona of ARC 2013 entry True Colours for supplying the photos.
Offshore lifejackets, although these are old, take a bit of handling
Righting an inverted 8 man liferaft
Crew Aditi after a number of lengthy swims in full foul weather gear.
Crew of True Colours having righted the raft
Our survival consultant, instructor and personal trainer John was a great no-nonsense yet encouraging live wire who simply never stopped working making this a first class, definitely no picnic, kind of a day. If you wanted someone to raise your chance of surviving a crisis look no further.