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Thankful for the SWITLIK CPR on Thanksgiving

by Ryan Taffet on 30. Nov, 2017 in Life Rafts

My wife deserves far more credit than I give her (and don’t they all really). In particular, her patience for my annual Thanksgiving morning shenanigans is something to be marveled. The problem really centers around the fact that the morning turns into the afternoon, which turns into the early evening… and that’s when the door swings open, everybody’s mouth full of turkey and stuffing and I’m standing there smelling like fish in my foul weather gear getting the “look of death” from my beloved partner. My buddies and I have a long-standing tradition of meeting at the boat every year on Thanksgiving just before dawn for what typically turns out to be one of our last fishing trips of the season. It’s at the end of the trip, when the bite is red hot and I know that the turkey is just coming out of the oven at home that “one more cast” becomes the phrase for the next two hours, making me incredibly late for dinner.

What's in your ditch bag?

by Danielle Connelly on 29. Nov, 2017 in Life Rafts

When there’s a need for you to abandon your boat, it is crucial for you to be prepared. Time is of the essence and you can’t be running around grabbing emergency supplies. Having a ditch bag ready to go, located in an accessible place near your life raft, could be in the difference in your survival.

Do you have a life raft on your aircraft?

by Switlik on 15. Nov, 2017 in Life Rafts

Depending on your aircraft and its operation, you may be required to have a life raft(s) with rated capacity and buoyancy for all of your passengers.  The FAA now requires a life raft on-board for flights over 50 miles overwater operations for Parts 121, 125 and 135 aircraft and for Part 91.501 over 100 miles overwater. And when traveling internationally, different regulations like the ICAO or Canadian regulations may additionally require one. Even if not mandated, large bodies of water, like lakes are an unforgiving environment, with hypothermia being a constant threat. For all aircraft, including Part 91 General, a life raft is the best protection from the elements when going further than gliding distance from land.

Using your Life Raft

by Switlik on 14. Nov, 2017 in Life Rafts

Reprint from Latitutes & Attitudes
Captain Richard Switlik


What do I do if I need it? 

Now that you've installed your raft, how do you launch it when needed? Unfortunately, there is no method or sequence that is appropriate for all circumstances. Remember the lawyer’s saying, "Circumstances alter cases." The amount of time you have is the main thing to consider. Fire, the raft's location, how fast water is coming in, number and condition of crew, and wind and sea conditions all may alter your actions.

You should follow these basic steps, however, for virtually all situations:

Servicing your life raft

by Danielle Connelly on 11. Oct, 2017 in Life Rafts

 

At the end of the day, no matter what brand you bought, there are two essential functions of the life raft: it must inflate and it must hold air. The only way to test those two functions is through regular inspection.  

If you are not required to carry a life raft on your boat, the U.S. Coast Guard does not require you to have it serviced. However, as a manufacturer, we recommend you get your raft serviced regularly. By inspecting your raft based on your manufactures’ service intervals, you will increase the life expectancy of your investment.

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