Travels with Paddles

a sea kayaking journal

Axel Schoevers (Photo: A. de Krook) Name:
Axel Schoevers
Rijswijk, Zuid-Holland, Netherlands

Sunday, October 30, 2016

When PANIC sets in

That's how I explained what Keirron just announced to the gathered attendance of the last day of the Autumn Gales Symposium to one of the potential participants of our class. And also what could happen when Keirron explains the day in more detail with his careful chosen words, and you lost your chance to bail out of the class without losing face.

Incident Management is about preventing and dealing with incidents. Keirron wants to take it a step further today; when all has gone utterly out of control and you still have to deal with the mess. And he is an 'inclusive' coach, so ALL are in the water out of our kayaks in no time, including all the coaches.

For me the 'panic' started when I thought I lost my sponge within a minute of launching... In general, all what is not attached to the kayak or person will get lost. I saw quite a few pumps and paddles floating about today. Loose decklines create a hazard. My VHF antenna got stuck underneath the very loose rear deck line. Rope skegs are a hazard. My VHF antenna got stuck underneath the rope of the rope skeg. Anything that sticks out of a PFD is a hazard.

Finally Keirron let an incident go so much out of control in outgoing current (safely), that actually the group decided on adding a fan/husky tow. Why I still don't know, but at least it added to the statistics that a fan/husky tow is not working in 99,997% of towing scenarios. And that a contact tow many times is a more effective option than hassling with any long towline.

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