Marathon Swimmers Forum
Fisherman saves his mate from drowning
edited November 2013
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I guess most countries have different lifejacket regulations. In many, lifejackets are not obligatory at all, or if the craft is under a certain size (like in the Channel). Professional fishermen often tend to dislike them. Traditionally fishermen in Ireland and the UK used to carry stones in their pockets so that if they went overboard, they would go down more quickly and most were not able to swim.
The stretch of coast I live near in Ireland is notoriously dangerous. Another local inshore boat was lost with all three hands (all brothers) last week. By chance, I took possibly the last photo of them at sea as I was walking the cliff after a swim with my camera three days beforehand. I took some shots because they were close to shore, not because I knew them. When I heard about another boat lost, I checked the photos and sure enough it was two of the three brothers and the same boat. They are not wearing lifejackets in my photos.
However with water temperatures of about 12C that week, a heavy onshore and being 3k from an any exit point (all cliffs), jackets would likely have made no difference. 12C is fine for us, but not for someone untrained. Had they had a transponder though...they were maybe three minutes by air from the Coast Guard Rescue Helicopter centre for the entire south coast.
Fishing and farming amongst the most dangerous occupations going.