Green Turtle Pond
Swim With Your Boat Day
by Manfred Janowski
Saturday, July 15, 2017
Beautiful day, perfect weather. The basic safety training started at 10am.
Everybody was there, ready to go. Except for Skip, who came an hour later, due to an emergency.
#1 The most important item was to always wear a buckled up PFD (Personal Flotation Device) or Life-vest on the water, even if you are a top notch swimmer, for many different reasons.
- Martin explained the different category's of PDF's. Kayakers, canoeist, and most paddlers use Cat #3,
- Leaders sometimes use Heavy Duty Safety PDF cat #5 to help in rescues.
- Cat #3 may not float you face up while unconscious.
- Martin also explained that flotation pillows, used to be OK as an PFD in the olden days, are no longer recognized as a legal PFD by authority's.
- Important is to have a quite snug fitting vest. So the vest can not slide or ride above your head.
- Often people buy their PFD's to large. They need to fit quite snugly.
- You need to actually try a new vest, by being in the water with it, to make sure it does not slip too high, to make the proper adjustments.
- I learned, that it is totally impossible to put on a PDF while treading water, or swimming in the water.
- Nobody can push the vest underwater, and strap the vest on, while swimming in the water. The flotation power of the vest prevents that.
#2 Everyone needs a whistle on the water, but make sure, if it is attached to a string, or lanyard, that it is not loosely dangling around. The string could get
snagged on something when you capsize a boat.
- Martin recommends to carry a special emergency knife, designed for paddling, with a blunt point, so you can cut any ropes, or fishing lines, you may get entangled in when capsizing.
- There where many, many other things explained related to paddling, too many for me to mention here.
- Some people practiced assisted, and unassisted self rescues (reentry), wet exits and slalom kayaking and Eskimo Rolls.
- I think almost everybody could use these refresher classes, every year.
We all had a real nice and educational day, like always at Green Pond.
The day eventually ended with a visit by a State Trooper. He told a bunch of older teenagers to turn off their loud radio, disturbing the peace. He saw their beer-bottles, no good in a park, and told them to leave, not allowing their inflatable play around-flotation devices. This pond is for paddling and fishing only, not for just swimming or floating around on inflatable play-toys, he told them.