World Sailing Survival Training...check.
This weekend was dedicated to safety training, at the Nordtac Marine Safety Training Center at Käringön, an island on the Swedish west coast. Refreshing an outdated World Sailing certificate, diving into new insights, testing safety equipment IRL and sharing experiences and thoughts with experienced sailors from Norway and Sweden was well spent time indeed. It was also an outstanding opportunity to get to know the safety equipment being prepared for the boat, the crew, and myself – like the EPIRB and AIS MOB unit in the image above, delivered by our safety partner Erlandssons Brygga.
The World Sailing Organization is governing the regulations on survival training for sailors worldwide. See more below.
Here are some of the training sessions performed this weekend at Nordtac Training Center – under competent guidance by Stefan Nilsson and Rolf Karlsson:
Presentation of the facilities – the indoor helicopter, the life raft, and an indoor ocean with an opportunity to get familiar with it even when in the water.
Climbing up in ropes and then jumping down fully dressed...
Medical training – taking care of bleeding head injuries in the water as well as lifting unconscious bodies out of the water, dressed in water-filled sailing gear...
First, we tested our life vests in the water, then we stepped down into a life raft...and later on, we challenged gravity and strength by climbing up into the same raft. But in total darkness, with the loudspeakers pounding out the roaring sound of an ocean storm and while being brutally sprayed with ice cold water right in our faces (thank you, Stefan, we know you did it with good intentions:-).
Being saved by the winch and lifted up and into the "helicopter".
Testing the very hot pyro technic emergency lights...
Getting to know more about our best buddies if lost out in the water – the Emergency Position Indication Radio Beacon (EPIRB) communicating directly with satellites and the smaller life west AIS Man Over Board transmitter, communicating with all AIS connected ships and boats within shorter distances.
At Käringön, The Swedish Sea Rescue Society runs a rescue station with several rescue ships, ribs, and water jets covering vast areas of the Swedish west coast. They are obviously well connected with the MRCC, or JRCCC, in Gothenburg – Maritime Rescue Coordination Center, or nowadays Joint Rescue Coordination Center covering marine and airborne rescue assignments.
And don't worry, if you get lost anywhere on Kärringön, the Swedish Sea Rescue Society personnel will find you in no time, using their fossil fuel-free bicycle rescue units...
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MORE ON WORLD SAILING SURVIVAL TRAINING
The organization World Sailing appoints national sailing authorities to educate and train sailors according to global safety requirements on various levels. The training completed this weekend is required by the "2018-2019 World Sailing Offshore Special Regulations 6.01" governing offshore racing for monohull and multihull sailboats. It is valid for five years. In international offshore sail racing, it is required that 1/3 of the crew has such a certificate for a boat/team to be able to start.