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How to avoid expensive mistakes when you buy a new or second-hand yacht. 

Available on Amazon here


Icom IC-M35We review the Icom IC-M35 handheld.  Read the full review here.

GMDSS A User's Handbook

By Denise Bréhaut

GMDSS A user's handbook








The Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS) provides a fast and efficient way of calling for assistance at sea, whatever the size of craft or its geographical position. Since it was first published, this book has helped explain the system for anyone using GMDSS and has been excellent pre-course reading for students.



SafaSail HatThe SafaSail Hard Hat looks just like a sailing cap, but will help protect you if you get a bang to the head.  See our review here

Man Overboard: Step by Step proceedure

Teki DaltonRehearsing your Man Overboard proceedure is a vital part of your safety briefing, particularly at the start of the Season. We are pleased to offer a 'Step by Step' proceedure by Teki Dalton. 

Teki (pictured left) conducts ISAF Safety and Sea Survival courses in Australia, Hong Kong, China and Turkey. He is a Yachting Australia offshore instructor and examiner as well as instructor and examiner for International Yacht Training Master of Yacht certificate. He was an inaugural board member of the Australian Maritime Safety Authority and has a Yachting Australia accredited sailing school in Mona Vale, Sydney.

We believe this article would be very useful for yacht skippers to keep in their safety brief on board, so we have made it available as a downloadable pdf.

Teki writes:  "When I was in China in 2007 conducting the first of the ISAF Safety and Sea Survival certificate courses I was asked to provide step-by-step procedures for a number of safety elements. The first was man over board:"

MOB basic step-by-step procedure


None of this should not be necessary if we stay harnessed to the boat!

For the purposes of the following procedures, Crew No 1 is the person who first observes a MOB situation. Crew No 2 is person closest to lifebuoy or Jonbuoy

Skipper, if not already doing so, runs the operation

Raise the verbal MOB alarm MAN OVERBOARD/ALL HANDS immediately. At night switch on and throw a waterproof torch or SEEBLITZ strobe towards the MOB. Watch continuously where the MOB fell or the light, do not take eyes off MOB or light regardless of other activity. Crew No 1 must be prepared to move around the vessel to maintain visual contact

Remember at 12 Knots the MOB is 90 metres behind in 15 seconds

Crew No 2: THROW the nearest lifebuoy or trigger the Jonbuoy. You will NOT be able to throw a lifebuoy more than 5 metres at best. Assist Crew No 1 in the short term and relay information to skipper/helm. Be prepared to ignite or activate flares or other signalling devices to assure the MOB that he has been seen and to alert vessels nearby. Be sure nobody jumps in water

Crew No 3: Repeat “all hands” at stations and instruct person nearest to GPS to press MOB button. Act as spoken relay between navigator and helm by standing close to the companion way

Navigator: Write down the MOB position on the chart or log. Navigator to talk with skipper regarding when to send a DSC or voice marine radio call (MAYDAY or PAN PAN) to other vessels or SAR authorities when skipper available to talk. When determining approximate splash point, navigator assesses delay in activating MOB on GPS, GPS position degradation, tidal movements, wind direction, boat speed etc to determine bearing to approximate splash point. If the MOB is wearing a personal locater beacon with 121.5 MHz SAR radio signal and vessel has RDF, this unit should be powered up and ready to use

Helm: TURN, SEARCH As soon as practicable after MOB, change direction of boat to minimise the distance travelled away from MOB. The QUICKSTOP method only to be used if it is safe to do so. Bring boat to a state that can be fully controlled to ensure MOB retrieval. The first stage of the QUICKSTOP (backed headsail) can give some time for initial preparation for the search

Ensure engine, if started at this stage, is in not in gear. Consider quickest and safest turning manoeuvres. Ensure that the boat is under full control at all times. It is the helm/skipper’s decision as to the method of return (QUICKSTOP, Figure 8, Beam Reach etc) and the configuration of the boat, whether motoring or minimum sail, when retrieval is made. Have the best available helmsman steering at this stage

Skipper, if not already doing so, and is not the MOB, runs the operation

Crew: Continue to control the boat with the navigator and observer giving best estimated position of MOB. Prepare for recovery, organising MOB sling and block and tackle, halyard, topping lift or main boom, other gear as required

Navigator: Determine search pattern if initial search unsuccessful. Keep the search pattern tight around the splash point. Consider using Join the Dots method. At night have spotlight or white illuminating parachute rocket flare ready for deployment to assist in location

Helm: RECOVER Depending on the sea conditions and whether the MOB is capable of assisting in the recovery, keep MOB to windward and throw the Lifesling or heaving line and if necessary a second lifebuoy. Recovery to leeward only if there is no possibility of the vessel rolling on the MOB. If either of the heaving line or second lifebuoy has already been deployed and is not in contact with the MOB, consider throwing a PFD with line attached. It is imperative to secure the MOB so that they are not going to drift off and they are in a safe situation for recovery. Different sea states may require different methods or a combination of several. Consider the safety of the rescuers in this operation; those that are assisting in the recovery to have PFD and harness on. It may be necessary to put a suitably equipped and line-tethered crew member in the water to assist in recovery. Use the MOB sling or Lifesling in conjunction with a block and tackle arrangement attached to sling at deck level or other recovery gear as required. If the MOB has been in the water for some time and may be suffering from hypothermia, arrangements should be made ready for the hypothermic lift to keep the MOB horizontal as they exit the water

First Aid officer: Have medical kit and thermal blanket ready. Keep MOB horizontal in case of hypothermia, assess condition, particularly for hypothermia and apply early management of injury if required. If crew member is conscious and lucid, ensure they remain dry and warm and keep under observation for some time. Be prepared to administer CPR. Severe shivering is a natural body response to even a short time in the water. Be aware of secondary drowning symptoms. Be prepared to call marine radio medical advice and devise strategy for medical evacuation either by vessel or helicopter

Navigator: If previously alerted authorities by marine radio, advise them of present situation. Use correct marine radio procedures. Log a complete account of the incident and have skipper initial/sign as a legal record

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