• JM BUSHA 54 Sailing Team

Sea Safety Training 

Let’s talk about all students’ first week back at University after the long June/July Break. Most students use that week to get into the swing of things and that first weekend to consolidate on the work of the previous week. Well, Ryan and I decided to tick another pre-requisite off the list for the race – The Sea Safety Training course. So we took a quick flight down to Cape Town for the weekend of the 20th/21st of July. We arrived in Cape Town on the coldest weekend of the year, which, to say the least, we were not prepared for! We got into out little hired car and went full speed ahead to Milnerton where the course was being presented.

Now enough about our travelling habits, let’s talk about the actual course. This course covered a wide range of content, from how/when to use a radio, to how to deploy and use your life raft and EPIRB. Due to the fact that we have already done our Radio License course, First Aid Course, Skippers tickets and had some practical experience, this course was a recap of a lot of things but highlighted some of the most important things we need to know about our safety. For example, Ryan and I had to learn how to put out a fire, use and EPIRB, deploy a life raft, flip the life raft and in our groups huddle together in the pool to preserve body heat. Did I mention that is was the coldest day of the year? And that we weren’t quite prepared for it? It’s a good thing we got to huddle up and learn to preserve body heat, otherwise the team would have possibly had to find 2 new crew members.

I have mentioned about a million fancy words, let’s give them some meaning:

  • EPIRB: EPIRB stands for Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon. An EPIRB is meant to help rescuers locate you in an emergency situation, and these radios have saved many lives since their creation in the 1970s

  • Life Raft: a raft, typically inflatable, for use in an emergency at sea.

It was incredibly useful to see these things first-hand and to actually do all the procedure hands on. Because you do not really get practice the process of deploying life rafts and flipping them etc. You always learn the theory of what to do in an emergency situation but if you have never even seen the life raft inflated, it becomes a little bit daunting.

Now, there are only a few more items to check off the list before we officially enter for Cape2Rio 2020.

- Michaela Robinson

© 2019 by JM BUSHA 54 Sailing Team