THE REST OF THE STORY
I was president of the Sailing Foundation in Seattle when the Lifesling was developed. Doug Fryer and Dick Marshall led the team that spent countless hours testing every known system of overboard rescue known. The problem reared its ugly head one Fourth of July weekend
when a skipper fell overboard with his wife and daughter as crew. He remained attached to the boat, but the crew couldn’t haul him aboard, so they sailed onto the beach and treated him there. Unfortunately, the 50-degree water got to him first. Thus began a search for a better way.
The crew could have had him aboard if they had used the Lifesling method, which instructs “retrieval and hoisting with a block and tackle.” The block and tackle becomes a useful tool for other things aboard. The Sailing Foundation has conducted hundreds of Safety at Sea seminars throughout the Northwest, and we probably have the most educated Lifesling students because of that. The old saying, “If all else fails, read the instructions,” always applies. Looking forward to your expanded coverage of Safety at Sea articles. (Look for them in the November 2018 issue —Ed.) Education never hurts.