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Jul 26 2009 IMPORTANT Info for Sailing Schools & Instructors!

 IMPORTANT Information for Dinghy Instructors and Sailing Schools!!!
 
Coach Boat and Sailboat Safety Equipment
 
During this past week, we have been made aware of a number of major safety blitz checks on the water by law enforcement agencies and have seen some coach boats get caught in these blitzes.
 
This is a good time to remind all our clubs, schools, coaches and sailors that the police do not turn a blind eye when it comes to on the water safety. It is the operator’s responsibility to make sure their vessel is compliant, safe and ready to be used in the conditions they may encounter while on the water.
 
Ontario Sailing reminds all operators to check the legal requirements of safety equipment (excerpts from the safe boating guide are found below). There are many other requirements besides the normal safety equipment. Some are listed below: 
  • Vessel licensing clearly marked on the bow of the vessel (you are required to carry a paper copy as well)
  • Operator needs their PCOC card, and, in Toronto waters a Toronto Port Authority Harbour license
  • You may be required to carry a re boarding device if the free board is more than 18” into your boat.
  • You may be required to carry a radar reflector and nautical charts for the area you are operating in (some research is required on this and is open to interpretation by the peace officer)

Additional items that we strongly recommend to coaches to include but are not limited to:

  • A VHF radio (you need a license to use this). Other devices such as a Cell phone and Family Radio are great tools but remember no one else can monitor the call.  In the case of a VHF, the Coast Guard can use the signal as a RDF (Radio Directional Finder) to locate you. Many times other pleasure craft task themselves to distress calls and are on scene before Coast Guard or local police can respond.
  • First Aid kit and tool kits
  • wire cutters (strong enough to cut the thickest wire on your fleets rigging)
  • water, energy bars.
  • checklist and/or details of the boats and sailors you are tasked to look after (especially at away events)
  • spare equipment such as bailers, shackles, rope, tape etc.
We strongly recommend that you carry the safety equipment that is required for the vessel size larger than your own. If an anchor or paddles are called for, carry both. Even if a fire extinguisher is not required aboard your boat, carry one. If you don’t think lights are required aboard, have them installed anyways.
 
A spare fuel tank is a recommended item. This may come in handy for those long days out on the water at events.
A long tow line that floats is handy and you should set up a towing protocol for your athletes and make sure they know the safest place to tie a tow line to (example the mast on a laser).
 
Finally, sailboats directly preparing for sanctioned competition (ie training camp prior to) or involved in a sanctioned competition, do not have to carry all the safety equipment but the sailors are strongly recommended to wear their PFD’s and have a whistle attached for communicating. This clause does not cover normal day to day training at sailing schools. All the training boats are required to carry the required safety equipment such as PFD, sound signal, bailer, buoyant heaving line.
 
It’s never too late to look at safe ways of storing safety gear. One of the schools I just visited store gear in dry bags, and the coaches sign the gear in and out at the start/end of the day. Others carry plastic bins with the gear. A daily checklist is a great pre sail drill practice to get into.
 
Excerpts from the Canadian Safe Boating Guide:
Powered Craft up to 6 metres in length (19'8")
  • 1 approved and properly sized lifejacket or PFD (personal floatation device) for each person on board
  • 15 m (50') buoyant heaving line
  • 1 manual propelling device [oar] OR anchor with 15 m (50') of cable, rope or chain
  • 1 bailer OR manual pump with enough hose to pump water overboard [Not required for multi-hull vessel that has subdivided multiple-sealed hull construction.]
  • 1 Class 5BC fire extinguisher if vessel has inboard engine OR a fixed fuel tank OR fuel-burning heater, stove, or refrigerator.
  • 1 watertight flashlight OR 3 flares* of Type A, B or C
  • Sound signaling device (horn)
  • Navigation lights must comply with Collision Regulations [Not required unless operated at night or in restricted visibility.]
Unpowered Craft up to 6 metres in length (19'8")
  • 1 approved and properly sized lifejacket or PFD (personal floatation device) for each person on board
  • 1 buoyant heaving 15 metres
  • one manual propelling device OR an anchor with 15 m (50') of cable, rope or chain
  • One Class 5BC fire extinguisher, if equipped with an inboard engine, a fixed fuel tank, or a fuel burning stove, fridge or heater.
  • 1 hand-bailer OR manual pump with enough hose to pump water overboard [Not required for any self-bailing sealed hull sailboat that cannot contain enough water to make the vessel capsize OR a multi-hull vessel that has subdivided multiple-sealed hull construction.]
  • Sound signaling device
  • Navigation lights must comply with Collision Regulations [Not required unless operated at night or in restricted visibility.]
Notes
An official copy of the boat's up-to-date license (i.e. in the owner's name) should be on board. A reasonable length of time is allowed to produce it.
Type of Flares:
Type A: Parachute flares (burns for at least 40 seconds)
Type B: Multi-Star flares (burns 4 to 5 seconds).
Type C: Hand held flares.
Type D: Hand held or buoyant smoke flare (day use only).
 
Note 1 – Exception for Bailers and Manual Bilge Pumps
A bailer or manual bilge pump is not required for a boat that cannot hold enough water to make it capsize or a boat that has watertight compartments that are sealed and not readily accessible.
Note 2 – Exception for Flares
Flares are not required for a boat that:
Is operating on a river, canal or lake in which it can never be more than one (1) ••nautical mile (1.852 km) from shore; or
Has no sleeping quarters and is engaged in an official competition or in final ••preparation for an official competition.
Note 3 – Radar Reflectors
Radar reflectors are required for boats under 20 m (65’7”) and boats that are built of mostly non-metallic materials. A radar reflector is not required if:
The boat operates in limited traffic conditions, daylight and favorable ••environmental conditions, and where having a radar reflector is not essential to the boat’s safety; or
The small size of the boat or its operation away from radar navigation makes ••having a radar reflector impracticable.
 
Alternative Requirements for Boats Involved in Competition
Is your boat used for racing? You may be allowed to carry alternative safety equipment when engaged in formal training, in an official competition or in final preparation for an official competition. Read on.
 
Formal training means practice for an official competition under the supervision of a coach or official certified by a governing body.
 
Official competition means a competition or regatta organized by a governing body or by a club or an organization that is affiliated with a governing body.
 
Final preparation for an official competition means activities to prepare for the competitions that take place at the competition venue and during the times specified by the event organizer.
 
Governing body means a national water sport governing body that publishes rules and criteria respecting conduct and safety requirements for skill demonstrations, formal training or official competitions and that:
Certifies coaches and coaching ••programs;
Certifies officials and programs for ••officials; or
Recommends training and safety ••guidelines for certified coaches or officials.
 
Safety craft means a vessel, aircraft or other means of transport with a crew on board that is used for watch and rescue during formal training, final preparation or official competitions.

 
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