Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Notes from Captains & Paddlers

For what it's worth, here are my notes from Sunday's Captains & Paddlers Meeting:

  • The regulation white lights can't be seen by the big boats, but the red/green running lights make a big difference.
  • We should be wary of the recreational boaters, who have larger, more powerful boats than us paddlers, yet may be less educated about boating safety.
  • Repeated over and over, the attendees are not the people who really need the info being discussed here today.
  • Learn whistle signal for passing and use them with an airhorn or when talking on the marine radio. one whistle, two whistles.
  • Reflective tape helps a lot - on the kayak, paddles and/or pdf.
  • Strobes lights mean distress, but you can use one as a last resort toe catch the eye of a vessel coming your way. Don't use as your regular light.
  • Glow stick strapped to pdfs are great.
  • 13 is the preferred channel since everyone always has this on.
  • If you don't have a radio, use hand signals, wave your paddler, whatever it takes.
  • Sailing vessels are a lot less maneuverable, than power vessels.
  • Be aware of safety & security zones, such as piers, docked commercial vessels, United Nations (sometimes expands all the way across the East River), etc.

Two new ideas for me are the use of glow sticks on pdfs and reflective tape for paddles & pdfs. My kayak already has reflective deck lines so I'm set there.

That's pretty much it, nothing earth shattering. Most of this even minimal info would be really helpful for new paddlers to have, though. How to get it to them is the question.

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