The message does not seem to be getting through, so a multinational effort is on to make boaters wear life jackets AND YOU CAN HELP. It's the 'Wear Your Life Jacket to Work Day'.
Put it on and WEAR IT TO WORK! You’ll look good believe me...
The Maritime and Coastguard Agency has been running a lifejacket campaign for the last four years to promote the benefits of wearing correctly fitted, well maintained lifejackets with sprayhoods and crotch straps.
On 18 May 2012 their staff will take part in an event organised by the American National Safe Boating Council, called ‘Wear Your Lifejacket to Work Day’.
MCA are joining colleagues, peers and friends around the world in demonstrating how easy it is to wear a lifejacket – and so they will be wearing their lifejackets at work.
They will be also be posting photos on the ‘Ready Set Wear It’ Facebook wall www.Facebook.com/ReadySetWearIt
If you would like to join MCA on 18 May please wear your lifejacket to work and post your photos on the Ready Set Wear It Facebook wall.
Why you should do it:
There were 95 maritime deaths in the last five years which might have been prevented if those involved had been wearing a lifejacket or buoyancy aid. These figures were collated following the annual meeting of the internationally formed Casualty Review Panel** in March.
The panel looked at fatal maritime incidents for 2011 and, where there was sufficient information, assessed whether it was probable, possible or unlikely that the person involved could have been saved had they been wearing a lifejacket or buoyancy aid.
In 2011, the panel judged that of the incidents that they considered, it would have been appropriate for 18 people to have worn some form of buoyancy. Of these, 13 would probably or could possibly have been saved had they been wearing a lifejacket or buoyancy aid. Between 2007-11 the panel considered 120 fatalities and in 95 of these cases a life could probably or might possibly have been saved had the person involved been wearing a lifejacket or buoyancy aid.
Transferring between your vessel and the shore is particularly hazardous. Twelve people died boarding or alighting during 2011 and the risk is increased further following alcohol consumption.
Eight of these twelve had been drinking before they returned to their vessel. Transferring between a vessel and the shore is a situation where one would not normally be expected to wear a lifejacket or buoyancy aid. Further research will be undertaken regarding this issue.
**The Casualty Panel Review comprises members of RNLI, Royal Yachting Association, Marine Accident Investigation Branch, Maritime and Coastguard Agency, National Water Safety Forum, the lifejacket industry and Portsmouth University.