Author Topic: Seattle Times Article on SUP Related Drownings  (Read 3111 times)

TallDude

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Re: Seattle Times Article on SUP Related Drownings
« Reply #15 on: August 02, 2019, 03:03:23 PM »
+1....

robon

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Re: Seattle Times Article on SUP Related Drownings
« Reply #16 on: August 02, 2019, 03:35:43 PM »
Nalu, this is a good letter and informative but there has been deaths in recent years due to leash entanglement and the deaths that have been publicized were not in white water paddling situations. More than one death over the past two years involved entanglement with barriers including buoys and lines across river mouths. One death Involved a paddler going under a boat and her leash getting entangled. While most deaths involve losing a board several deaths involved leash entanglement over the past couple years has occurred.

Current and tidal changes were involved in at least two of these entanglement deaths over the past two years and education is also needed on paddling in currents and entanglement with leashes, because a leash can also directly cause hold downs and inescapable entrapment.
« Last Edit: August 02, 2019, 03:45:30 PM by robon »

Area 10

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Re: Seattle Times Article on SUP Related Drownings
« Reply #17 on: August 02, 2019, 04:01:07 PM »
Yes, I have nearly died on FOUR different occasions because of my leash getting caught up with an obstacle. We all should really be wearing quick-release waist leashes. That would solve most leash entanglement issues. Stupidly perhaps, I only tend to wear one for downwinding (where there are strong performance advantages too), although sometimes for surf too. But I really should be wearing a waist leash all the time. Helmets for surf and downwind would also be a good idea, although no-one does it (well, sometimes I do if the conditions are very extreme, but Iím the only ocean person I know who does).

And yes, being able to swim is critical. Thatís the biggest lifesaver of all.

OkiWild

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Re: Seattle Times Article on SUP Related Drownings
« Reply #18 on: August 03, 2019, 02:09:57 AM »
I try really hard to stay out of this kind of discussion, as they often devolve into a bunch of nannies, all trying to out-safety each other  ::)

That said, this one was constructive, and everything Nalu wrote is, in my opinion, right on target. Got all the points and counter points. At times, not everyone wears a PFD, there are good reasons why not, and they were properly addressed here. An inflatable can be USCG-approved Type-V, just like my kayaking rescue vests. But a Type-V has to be worn, and not stowed to be "approved."

On the dangers of leash entanglement. Pretty much all surf leashes are quick release. The most important factor being that one must have the presence of mind to release it, and be familiar with how to do it under pressure. Regardless of where it's attached, if someone panics, it's not coming off. 40 years surfing, I've had the leash wrapped up in the coral after a wipe out more times than I can remember. I've never failed to reach down and release it (obviously) with a single tug. If someone's really worried about the Velcro not coming undone, Dakine sells a quick release kit for their ankle leashes. But again, if someone's panicking, it doesn't matter. Any quick release requires practice. If someone thinks they may need to use it, it should be practiced until it's an automatic reaction.

I only wear Dakine leashes, and as I often surf well off shore, I'm obsessive about maintaining them. I do an inspection before I go out, after I get out, and any time during a surf where I suspect the cord may have come in contact with the fins (I've caught cuts like this). If I'm out farther than I know I can comfortably swim in,  I wear an impact vest, even when it's small. Close-fitting and doesn't obstruct getting back on the board, while providing substantial flotation.



Area 10

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Re: Seattle Times Article on SUP Related Drownings
« Reply #19 on: August 03, 2019, 05:47:55 AM »
In some situations where there are heavy currents and fast-moving water it is simply not possible to reach down to an ankle- or even calf-mounted leash attachment. And some leashes that have quick release pins, actually wonít release under tension. A friend alerted me to this about the XM leashes. I didnít believe him so tied the leash to a tree and pulled the pin from different angles under tension. From most angles the leash stayed firmly attached even when the quick release pin was fully pulled out.

So, make sure you actually try the ďquick releaseĒ features of your leashes to make sure they work in the way you expect them to.

None of this is a reason not to use a leash, of course. But the limits and uses of pretty much any safety equipment (including a pfd) need to be considered carefully. Most of this stuff (like pfds) will save you in one circumstance but put you at risk in another. Itís tough to get this across in a simple message, and it doesnít reduce to a simple law or regulation. For instance, for people who can swim, the primary safety device is a leash. But for complete non-swimmers it would be a lifejacket. I have no idea why someone who canít swim at all would SUP. Madness. But they do.

ninja tuna

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Re: Seattle Times Article on SUP Related Drownings
« Reply #20 on: August 03, 2019, 07:45:12 AM »
One thing I see and this is just my opinion.  If a leash becomes an "official" requirement rather than sup rental companies just making their customers wear one, I see a lot more red tape.   Because now any official life saving leash is going to have to be put through a series of proving tests and be have some sort of certifications.  This could now be the life or death link. And if it some how fails, now it is just another avenue for blame and lawsuits.

LBsup

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Re: Seattle Times Article on SUP Related Drownings
« Reply #21 on: August 03, 2019, 08:42:08 AM »
Another fatality due to leash getting stuck on piling.  Whatís weird is the woman was doing sup yoga and went to help someone else who got stuck in a current, huh!
Happened Friday in Long Island, NY.  I had trouble trying to get a link to the article. 
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robon

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Re: Seattle Times Article on SUP Related Drownings
« Reply #22 on: August 03, 2019, 10:49:40 AM »
Another fatality due to leash getting stuck on piling.  Whatís weird is the woman was doing sup yoga and went to help someone else who got stuck in a current, huh!
Happened Friday in Long Island, NY.  I had trouble trying to get a link to the article.

https://www.newsday.com/long-island/suffolk/albertson-woman-drowns-1.34564310

Very tragic and this can happen in seconds. To touch on what Area put out there is that quick release leashes aren't actually quick release imo. These leashes have "quick release" tabs or straps that you typically have to reach down to release, and in strong currents, and when you are already entangled, this becomes much more difficult and sometimes impossible. I have leashes with quick release toggles for whitewater/river use, and sometimes even getting to this on my waist isn't easy at all in strong current, so as mentioned before, preventative education, practice and staying calm is key, but entanglement with leashes is obviously dangerous and there has been multiple deaths over the past few years as a result.

There is some great stuff getting put out on this thread but I think it has to be a really balanced approach that goes both ways. If we are going to say the board is also a floatation device and it's very important to be tethered to it, then the dangers of entanglement need to be presented as well. Education on paddling in current, around boats, being aware of obstructions that can lead to entanglement, and learning about leashes and their different applications. No one thinks they are going to get entangled when they head out for the day and then it happens. It's the preventative piece, the equipment, and escape practices that also need to be incorporated as well.

pdxmike

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Re: Seattle Times Article on SUP Related Drownings
« Reply #23 on: August 03, 2019, 11:09:38 AM »
One thing I see and this is just my opinion.  If a leash becomes an "official" requirement rather than sup rental companies just making their customers wear one, I see a lot more red tape.   Because now any official life saving leash is going to have to be put through a series of proving tests and be have some sort of certifications.  This could now be the life or death link. And if it some how fails, now it is just another avenue for blame and lawsuits.
Yes, any time people talk about this subject, I'm dreading where the laws may go--mandatory pfd wearing, leashes doubling in price due to testing listings...


And like robon (and others) said, leashes have problems, too.  The reality is laws won't create safety.  It still comes down to people taking responsibility to learn what creates safety for their own situation, and doing it. 

Windwarrior

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Re: Seattle Times Article on SUP Related Drownings
« Reply #24 on: August 03, 2019, 11:30:07 AM »
In some situations where there are heavy currents and fast-moving water it is simply not possible to reach down to an ankle- or even calf-mounted leash attachment. And some leashes that have quick release pins, actually wonít release under tension. A friend alerted me to this about the XM leashes. I didnít believe him so tied the leash to a tree and pulled the pin from different angles under tension. From most angles the leash stayed firmly attached even when the quick release pin was fully pulled out.

So, make sure you actually try the ďquick releaseĒ features of your leashes to make sure they work in the way you expect them to.

None of this is a reason not to use a leash, of course. But the limits and uses of pretty much any safety equipment (including a pfd) need to be considered carefully. Most of this stuff (like pfds) will save you in one circumstance but put you at risk in another. Itís tough to get this across in a simple message, and it doesnít reduce to a simple law or regulation. For instance, for people who can swim, the primary safety device is a leash. But for complete non-swimmers it would be a lifejacket. I have no idea why someone who canít swim at all would SUP. Madness. But they do.
Now THAT'S disturbing news to learn! Quick release that doesn't actually release???? I'm glad this little bit of information was posted in here because I for one would've NEVER thought of this being an issue with tension applied. Ironically, in moving waters there's ALWAYS going to be tension!!

Thanks for sharing that CRITICAL piece of information!!!
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Windwarrior

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Re: Seattle Times Article on SUP Related Drownings
« Reply #25 on: August 03, 2019, 05:34:30 PM »
My other thought is, would having a diving knife be a wise thing to have? Perhaps more than one strapped to calf, forearm, bicep or even a thigh??

Even though I've never been a diver, I know that most have a knife or two strapped for just in case moments.
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hbsteve

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Re: Seattle Times Article on SUP Related Drownings
« Reply #26 on: August 03, 2019, 08:38:16 PM »
A paddler in Newport Beach always wore a dive type knife on his calf.  Most of the time he paddled out to the ocean for a two hour paddle.

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surfcowboy

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Re: Seattle Times Article on SUP Related Drownings
« Reply #28 on: August 05, 2019, 08:56:00 PM »
In any design you canít cover all edge cases.

We all agree on this for 99% of situations. Keep it simple.

1. You should know how to swim.

2. PFDís are great

3. Leashes are equally as important.



Only we understand these nuances. And Iím not even sure where to get a waist leash. Iím betting you canít buy one in Wisconsin or wherever they rent these damn boards on lakes. ;) All the points here are solid and especially the one about currents and ankle leashes but Iíd offer that while seatbelts can kill you, they save far more people.

Windwarrior

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Re: Seattle Times Article on SUP Related Drownings
« Reply #29 on: August 05, 2019, 08:59:07 PM »
A paddler in Newport Beach always wore a dive type knife on his calf.  Most of the time he paddled out to the ocean for a two hour paddle.
Is there something missing from this story? I don't get it.
Hala Carbon Hoss
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