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Safety Drills?

Discussion in 'YachtForums Yacht Club' started by ayachtguy, Oct 12, 2011.

  1. ayachtguy

    ayachtguy Senior Member

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    I’m curious how other captains run safety drills for your crew on different yachts. Do any of you have programs or ideas that seem to work? Drills are required by STCW, but I’m interested in what drills you have created, how often you implement them, and how often you prepare the crew for their response? I’d like to hear about all areas of drills: evacuation, fire, medical, etc. Any good ideas out there? What works for you?
  2. Marmot

    Marmot Senior Member

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    There is a boatload of literature available on how to design effective drills. Regarding what drills and how often, look at the flag state regulations for your boat. If you don't know where to start then it might benefit you to contact one of the schools offering marine safety training courses and spend some time talking to an instructor or two.

    If your boat is required to comply with ISM then everything should be spelled out quite clearly in the manual, including the drill schedule. This sort of thing is not an ad hoc process unless you are running a small boat.

    Take a look at the document linked below as an FYI thing and don't dismiss any of it just because it is aimed at large commercial ships and crews. The same risks exist on small boats and the response is the same no matter what.

    http://himtmarine.net/books/contingency notes2-jj.pdf
  3. ayachtguy

    ayachtguy Senior Member

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    Safety Drills

    Marmot--I had to laugh when I looked at the document you linked, which was from the Hindustan Marine Institute. Sounds like a Saturday Night Live skit, but the materials were both interesting and useful.

    I'm well aware of all the requirements for drills from the various societies, the governments, and even the insurance companies, heaven help us!!

    What I'm really looking for , however, are interesting or unusual ways to run the drills. How to make them palatable and get the crew invested in the project. God knows we've all been thru enough boring drills, both military and on boats. What I'd like to find are some ways to make them challenging as well as informative.

    Anyone else out there?
  4. Ken Bracewell

    Ken Bracewell Senior Member

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    We have an annual contest to see who can get into their survival suit the fastest- you'd be surprised how fast those times are when there is an iPod or $100 (plus bragging rights) on the line for the winner.

    Otherwise, we pretty much do the same old boring drills, so I am interested to see where this thread goes.
  5. ayachtguy

    ayachtguy Senior Member

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    Safety Drills

    Ken--That's a great idea! I'm just sorry that it's limited to just your crew. I'd be there wedging my chubby body into a survival suit with the best of them.

    But I'd bet the times aren't nearly as fast as when the crew is standing in ankle-deep icy water!!

    Actually, that would be a really cool boatshow contest for someone like Mustang or other supplier to stage.
  6. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    About a decade ago when I worked on the Gallant Lady, our survival suit, the pants were a size 28" waist. On the other yacht they were a size 30" waist. There was only about 20% of the crew that fit into the fire suit. Great thinking
  7. K1W1

    K1W1 Senior Member

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    Hi,

    I would suggest that you pay attention to what was posted as was stated it applies directly to big ships and the risks are no different on smaller vessels.

    Do you hold any qualifications as a Captain yourself?
  8. Andrew B.

    Andrew B. Member

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    And your post is helpful, how ?

    Have you tested your reading comprehension lately ?

    Quote from OP "Marmot--I had to............., but the materials were both interesting and useful."
    And your problem with this is ?

    OP in the first line clearly stated "I’m curious how other captains run safety drills".

    Fairly clear to me the OP is a Captain simply attempting to get some new ideas
    for making safety drills more interesting, with perhaps more enthusiastic
    participation, and who knows maybe even some fun by all concerned.

    I would suggest that maybe you need to pay closer attention to what
    the OP posted...
  9. K1W1

    K1W1 Senior Member

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    Hi,

    I can read and understand what is written pretty well.

    From what you have written I would say you need to reassess your understanding of the written word before criticizing others.

    I suggested that the OP Pay attention to what another Member had posted, I was also curious to know where the OP who seems to indicate he is a Captain himself by the use of the words "other Captains" got a Qualification himself with no knowledge of such a basic safety matter.

    If you have a problem with my questioning of other posters to clarify a point please feel free to let me know.
  10. Andrew B.

    Andrew B. Member

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    Competitions

    I believe your idea about boat show contest is worth exploring.

    Something like the Firefighter Combat Challenges that are held in
    various locals might stir some interest.

    I am a little surprised that this isn't/hasn't been done for boat crews
    of all sizes. Solo to multi-crewed, pro classes(Police, fire dept, etc.),
    pleasure, and cruise yachts.

    And something I enjoyed, and learned a few things from was
    getting to watch the sailors of the USS Canberra preform a few
    different safety drills.

    Getting the Coast Guard, or Navy to bring one of their boats
    to one of the larger boat shows might draw some interest.
    Allowing civilians to observe some of their safety drills would be
    great IMHO...

    Showing up super sharp for the Guard Duty formation knowing the
    sharpest soldier that showed up got out of that nights guard duty
    was a good carrot to dangle in front of me I guess. I made
    Super-Numero every time but once. Made a little extra money on
    the side too...

    Pride in performance, be it man, or machine can go far...
  11. ayachtguy

    ayachtguy Senior Member

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    No Hijacking!!

    Oh, for Heaven’s sake, K1W1. Have another cup of coffee and lighten up. I didn’t realize I had to write “just joking” when I responded to Marmot that I found the Hindustani Marine Institute a giggle. I’ll repeat: I found the materials both interesting and useful. Got it?

    I’m also not clear how you made the jump to suggest that I have “no knowledge of such a basic safety matter” and to question any qualifications I have. Seems you’re a little cranky and, hmm, what’s the word you use Down Under? Oh, yes…..aggro.

    All I wanted from my original post were some thoughts on how to make safety drills more interesting, more useful, and less of a drag. If that offended you somehow, I apologize. This isn’t about me or my quals.

    But, as to any qualifications I might have, I was a Coastie when you were playing with your rubber ducky in the tub in the ‘60s. Gone on to many tickets, many oceans, many countries.

    But please, don’t highjack what was turning into an interesting thread with a pissing contest over who has the bigger ticket. It means nothing to this thread or to other readers of YachtForums.

    To others, I’m still interested in thoughts on safety drills, and let’s open this up to crews, too. How have some of your captains handled drills that made them more palatable and informative?
  12. Andrew B.

    Andrew B. Member

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    Say what ?

    I would suggest you have added nothing of use, or importance to this
    topic, and still don't comprehend very much, if anything the OP has said
    about the topic.


    Questioning the OP's qualifications as a Captain is ludicrous, and
    totally uncalled for.

    Give us a break KIWI. Even a landlocked sailor like me understood the OP
    was just looking for some new ideas on how to make safety drills perhaps more
    enticing as well as more interesting for the participants.

    Sometimes your leaps of assumptions are amazing !

    The OP posted his last post as I was typing this...well said. I hope
    you found my suggestions useful...Pitting boat crews against each other could
    be a great way to encourage livelier participation by the crews, and us onlookers
    could learn, and/or refresh some skills too.

    If no other crew is available to compete against, one can always compete against time.

    Awards, extra paid day off at the next port of call, bonuses stir interest, etc..
  13. ayachtguy

    ayachtguy Senior Member

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    Hey, Andrew—I’d forgotten about the Firefighter Challenges. I’m always in awe of how fast they can yank a ladder off a truck, race across a room and then run up a wall.

    My experience has been that any safety demonstration at a boatshow, whether it’s a liferaft inflation or lighting off a fire extinguisher, draws a crowd of onlookers. Maybe boatshow operators are listening….?

    Hey, Carl----wanna sponsor a YachtForums competition? First crew to get foam on a fire? First crew to launch a liferaft and cast off?

    Or maybe take Ken Bracewell’s survival suit race one step further and limit it to bikini-clad stews and crews? Definitely more watchable than New Jersey Housewives.
  14. Marmot

    Marmot Senior Member

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    "Sometimes your leaps of assumptions are amazing!"


    Not really. The way the OP's questions were phrased lead me to think that there was a gap in there somewhere. The following quote is what made me wonder ...

    "Drills are required by STCW, but I’m interested in what drills you have created, how often you implement them, and how often you prepare the crew for their response?"

    I think K1W1 read it the same way I did. if someone asks question A I don't presume to answer a different question.

    Drills are not required by STCW. Emergency drills are required by SOLAS.

    How often they are performed is outlined in SOLAS, scheduled by ISM (when applicable) and enforced by Flag and Port State Control. STCW exists to help make sure crewmembers know what equipment is supposed to exist, where it should be, and how to use it as well as attempt to ensure that officers know how to instruct crew on how conduct drills and to use the stuff.

    "All I wanted from my original post were some thoughts on how to make safety drills more interesting,..."

    That is not what was asked. The question above was, what drills, how often, and how to train crew. Those are not questions normally asked by licensed, experienced and qualified officers.

    How to design and implement an effective drill is another issue altogether and is a great topic but that is not what was asked.
  15. chuckb

    chuckb Senior Member

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  16. Marmot

    Marmot Senior Member

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    Please try and stay on topic, chuck.
  17. chuckb

    chuckb Senior Member

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  18. ayachtguy

    ayachtguy Senior Member

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    Nitpicking

    I don't know why, but it seems to me that the term "Senior Member" is a code for a nitpicking twit who has to prove something by derailing simple questions.

    Marmot, thanks for sending the Hindustani link in spite of apparently not understanding my question.

    To both K1W1 and Marmot, what does it matter if I'm a licensed master of a 1000-ft. ULCC, if I'm a Kings Point graduate, or if I own an 8-foot rowboat? It was a straightforward question aimed at starting a dialog of what works for other people, whether or not they are captains.

    Instead, I got people questioning my qualifications to ask such a question. What....you'd only answer if I held a 100-ton ticket? A 500-ton ticket?

    I don't understand the mentality that I see so often on this website where the "oh-so-experienced Senior Members" take it upon themselves to disparage and criticize anyone they deem unworthy.

    And, out of the 16 responses to my question, exactly one had a useful idea to contribute. Thank you, Ken Bracewell.

    The rest wanted to piss and moan about whether I'm a captain or whether the drills are required by SOLAS or IMO or whoever.

    Really...you guys need to get back on your meds.
  19. ayachtguy

    ayachtguy Senior Member

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    Woops!

    Make that two out of 16.

    Andrew had a solid idea about doing something like the Fire Fighters Challenges.

    In thinking about it, that might be fun to do when yachts are gathered together: competitions between yachts for something besides best hors d'oeuvres. Possibles: Antiqua charter show, FLIBS, Miami. Lots more.

    It would also inspire the crews to train harder in order to kick ass, too.
  20. Marmot

    Marmot Senior Member

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    "I don't know why, but it seems to me that the term "Senior Member" is a code for a nitpicking twit who has to prove something by derailing simple questions."

    No need to abuse those who have been here long enough to be assigned the label. Those labels are not chosen or self descriptions so calling them names is hardly in keeping with what you seem to be concerned about.


    "Marmot, thanks for sending the Hindustani link in spite of apparently not understanding my question."

    I think I understood what you wrote and asked for. You may have meant something else or thought you asked for something else but you didn't ask for it until you wrote "All I wanted from my original post were some thoughts on how to make safety drills more interesting ..."

    "To both K1W1 and Marmot, what does it matter if I'm a licensed master of a 1000-ft. ULCC, if I'm a Kings Point graduate, or if I own an 8-foot rowboat? It was a straightforward question aimed at starting a dialog of what works for other people, whether or not they are captains."

    No it wasn't, go back and read what you asked and my response at the time and in the last couple of comments. It matters a great deal because a good answer depends on how much you know and what experience you have designing drills and even participating in drills. It depends on your experience in leadership and being lead. It matters a great deal and if you can't undertand that then following a set of instructions isn't going to accomplish what drills are supposed to accomplish.

    "I don't understand the mentality that I see so often on this website where the "oh-so-experienced Senior Members" take it upon themselves to disparage and criticize anyone they deem unworthy."

    The first criticism I read was another member attacking K1W1 for asking what level of competence should a response be framed. Tender egos ran amuck from that point on. It was a valid question, are you asking from the point of view of a master or a deckhand, what size boat and how many crew, what leadership training do you have, what is your experience with regard to training of others? All very valid questions that determine how to compose an answer that you can use and other readers might learn from.

    "And, out of the 16 responses to my question, exactly one had a useful idea to contribute. Thank you, Ken Bracewell."

    Yes, and he provided it after you stated what you really wanted.

    "The rest wanted to piss and moan about whether I'm a captain or whether the drills are required by SOLAS or IMO or whoever. Really...you guys need to get back on your meds."

    Whining about not having a better response to a poorly asked question and attacking a broad group of members doesn't make me feel particularly eager to provide you with much information or provide a stack of excellent resources that are readily available.

    As far as the SOLAS and IMO comment, it just goes further to show why your original question raised a red flag with those who have made a career out of knowing the answers to a few of nautical life's persistent questions. Your fatuous Saturday Night Live comments about the excellent document either indicate a fundamental prejudice against a certain class of mariner, simple racism, or more likely, ignorance of what STCW is and what it is about as well as the history and reason why SOLAS, drills, ISM, and a "safety culture" exists in the maritime industry. This is why your level of expertise was questioned ...

    Your response has answered a lot of those questions.