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robertiux

Safety Incident

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robertiux

Friends,

I find this site very very useful in many respects, one thing I miss is sharing safety experiences, especially "near misses", when using our boats. I know it's not easy to recreate an incident which normally we try to leave behind but it is also very helpful to understand what happened while sharing the point, administrators of the site will decide.

Here is mine in a sequence of events:

Situation: Wakeboard skiing, skier falls, boat moving around at low speed, increased the speed slightly to hit the boat waves (LXi), approaching the skier on the right of the boat slightly fast, change to reverse for braking, the boat gets closer sidewise to the skier, the boat creates an under-the boat stream (right to left and to the front), the skier tightly attached to the board gets pulled under the boat until stopping the engine, the board presents a wide area for the stream increasing the pull. Wedge in the bottom position might provoque a higher/different stream.

Although I understand the stream was not in the direction of the propeller and therefore no risk of injury by it, the psycological effect for the skier (and the rest in the boat) is way high.

Hope this helps others prevent the situation, approach the skiers without the need of braking with reverse and if the case arises better to keep moving forward around the skier.

Experienced drivers feel free to add for our own benefit.

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jayjoans

You must have been going WAY too fast WAY too close to hit reverse that hard and for that long to cause enough power to pull a boarder under your boat.

I say this is 100% driver error. To get that close and have that happen you're doing something terribly wrong.

I don't think this is a "safety concern". BASIC driving skill is assumed when you own a high performance activity specific boat.

Edited by jayjoans

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Sixball

Only time I ever use any speed around a down rider is if I feel the need to cover him or her from another boat or if I thought a possible injury. If not I am near dead slow and off to one side never dead on!

Edited by Sixball

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DUKENO1
You must have been going WAY too fast WAY too close to hit reverse that hard and for that long to cause enough power to pull a boarder under your boat.

I say driver this is 100% driver error. To get that close and have that happen you're doing something terribly wrong.

I don't think this is a "safety concern". BASIC driving skill is assumed when you own a high performance activity specific boat.

Plus1.gif

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zad0030

Wow....

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Sixball

I also will bet the person in the water was on the drivers side. With the boat in reverse it pulls the boat to the right. I suspect it pulled the boat to the boarder not the boarder under the boat. In the end the person is still going under the boat.

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mellen_mpz

Had a similar situation that cost me a prop repair last weekend (second trip on new boat.....real nice). I was just a passenger (my boat co-owner was driving) and my other buddy was wake-surfing. He fell so we did a slow 180. He was in the water waiting on us so he decided to stand on the surfboard (so now the board was about 4 feet under the surface). As we came by him my buddy driving clicked the boat into reverse. Right at that moment the board slipped out from under the rider and shot straight into the prop. CLUNK CLUNK CLUNK. Dinged 2 blades.....$130.

Moral of the story......It was probably a fluke but the new rule is to not stand on the board anymore!!!!

PS....the board didnt fare too well either........looked like a shark attacked it!

Edited by mellen_mpz

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CedarLakeSkier

I use the "boat swings to the right" in reverse all the time when picking up a skier/boarder. If you are passing slowly (key) a small tap in reverse will stop the boat and start the platform swinging to the right. Note that the propeller and engine is stopped before I am close to the person in the water. If this is done right, the platform swings right over for the person to grab it. This is appreciated by most folks that are worn out from a long session.

I will say on occasion we get a "newbie" in the water and they start swimming torwards the boat. This completely freaks me out and when this happens all bets are off. The engine gets shut off and the rider needs to find there way to the platform.

Edited by CedarLakeSkier

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Sunscape fan

When I come around to a dropped rider, I am never within approximately 10 feet of the rider. Then I just flip the tow line over to them, which is usually close to them anyway since I just went around them. They grab on to it and I pull the rider in to the swim platform. The engine is shut off before I do this. That way there is no chance of accident and the rider is relaxed while I pull them in. Works well.

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obski
I use the "boat swings to the right" in reverse all the time when picking up a skier/boarder. If you are passing slowly (key) a small tap in reverse will stop the boat and start the platform swinging to the right. Note that the propeller and engine is stopped before I am close to the person in the water. If this is done right, the platform swings right over for the person to grab it. This is appreciated by most folks that are worn out from a long session.

I will say on occasion we get a "newbie" in the water and they start swimming torwards the boat. This completely freaks me out and when this happens all bets are off. The engine gets shut off and the rider needs to find there way to the platform.

This is just what I do when picking up a rider.

We also always slowly idle back to the rider. The only exception to that would be if there was a safety concern, eg. a potential injury, or to protect the rider from other boats that may not be paying attention.

Edited by obski

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BlastRlxi
When I come around to a dropped rider, I am never within approximately 10 feet of the rider. Then I just flip the tow line over to them, which is usually close to them anyway since I just went around them. They grab on to it and I pull the rider in to the swim platform. The engine is shut off before I do this. That way there is no chance of accident and the rider is relaxed while I pull them in. Works well.

Plus1.gif The kids love pulling the skier (usually me) in with the ski rope. They consider it their job.

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Michigan boarder

With the rope attached to a tower generally the boat is very far away from the boarder, at least 12 feet, as the rope is tracking to the side and cutting the cirlce short. They have a narrow opportunity to grab the rope before missing it, but if missed it's just another circle. You should only consider reverse when the rope has passed thru their hands and they are about to grab the handle, and you are 60 feet from them, just to keep from jerking the rider if they are not ready.

If you do it right, reverse should never have to be used. If I fall, by the time my wife comes back and circles around me I am ready to go. The boat is in forward at idle, never even goes into neutral. When the handle hits my hand it's a split second nod to her and I'm up and off again.

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SacRiverRat

To add a constructive coaching comment here, if you ever find yourself a little to speedy, going past your rider.. don't try and fix it with revers while next to the rider.. this example demonstrated what happens if you try and revers too much. Just wait until the rider goes past the boat, then use the reverse to stop the travel.. and allow the rider toget pulled in by the rope, or swim the few feet. Don't try and back up to them, that isn't safe either..

Just like heading into the dock, start your deceleration early.. The wake wasn't that close to the rider.. no way you could turn around that fast.. so clearly, after getting over the wake, the speed was held too long

Lesson learned

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RTS

I would never approach a downed rider with speed that required more than idle reverse avoid running over him/her. Much less enough to have any chance of sucking them under the boat with the amount of reverse you are talking about. What if you accidently pulled your lanyard at the moment you needed reverse? What about the engine quitting at that moment? It could happen.

I make sure that when I'm approaching a downed skier or a dock (or my trailer...anything, for that matter) that should the engine quit right then, the worst that's going to happen is a little bump.

Edited by rts

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OurVLX4fun
Only time I ever use any speed around a down rider is if I feel the need to cover him or her from another boat or if I thought a possible injury. If not I am near dead slow and off to one side never dead on!

Agree with Six no need for speed unless your trying to cover the downed skier

Be safe out there

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Bill_AirJunky
..........boat moving around at low speed, increased the speed slightly to hit the boat waves (LXi), approaching the skier on the right of the boat slightly fast, change to reverse for braking, the boat gets closer sidewise to the skier, the boat creates an under-the boat stream (right to left and to the front), the skier tightly attached to the board gets pulled under the boat until stopping the engine,

I read this the other night & had to pass. I just didn't understand what was being said. Now that others have given their 2 cents I think I get it.

So your pulling around the downed rider. As you gassed it in reverse, you experienced what might be considered an "undertow"? Where it actually pulled the rider under the boat?

Ouch. I think your pulling around the rider way too close. And your giving it way too much gas in reverse.... and for way too long.

When doing this kind of maneuver, I give it short bursts of reverse, maybe hitting 2000 RPM, rarely more. A little bit goes a long ways in this kind of situation, especially when there is someone in the rider behind or to either side of the boat.

I think I'd recommend some time with a more experienced driver to see what they are doing in a similar situation.

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footnlongline
Friends,

I find this site very very useful in many respects, one thing I miss is sharing safety experiences, especially "near misses", when using our boats. I know it's not easy to recreate an incident which normally we try to leave behind but it is also very helpful to understand what happened while sharing the point, administrators of the site will decide.

Here is mine in a sequence of events:

Situation: Wakeboard skiing, skier falls, boat moving around at low speed, increased the speed slightly to hit the boat waves (LXi), approaching the skier on the right of the boat slightly fast, change to reverse for braking, the boat gets closer sidewise to the skier, the boat creates an under-the boat stream (right to left and to the front), the skier tightly attached to the board gets pulled under the boat until stopping the engine, the board presents a wide area for the stream increasing the pull. Wedge in the bottom position might provoque a higher/different stream.

Although I understand the stream was not in the direction of the propeller and therefore no risk of injury by it, the psycological effect for the skier (and the rest in the boat) is way high.

Hope this helps others prevent the situation, approach the skiers without the need of braking with reverse and if the case arises better to keep moving forward around the skier.

Experienced drivers feel free to add for our own benefit.

Were you skiing on a lake or a river? I am asking because of the obvious approach hazards of the latter when done wrong. river current will move downed skier faster than the boat

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Hack

First, it sounds like no one was hurt which everyone here is thankful for.

Second, your problem started with the power turn you likely did to pick up your skier. That is why you needed to gas it over the wakes. To fix that, after the skier falls cut the throttle. Turn the wheel hard and you'll spin in a 180. The wakes will go around you and you can slowly idle to the fallen rider.

I appreciate you sharing this. While this hasn't happened to me, EVERYONE on this site has had something scary/unexpected happen. We should learn from each other and you shouldn't feel stupid. Just don't do it again AND try to think of how to avoid other scenarios (at least 150' from other boats, have ALL kids wear life jackets ALL the time when on board, etc...).

I've never had anything this scary and hope I never will but I DO worry all the time especially when my 5 year old is boarding. Mainly I worry about the other idiots on the lake...they're scary....

Have fun with the season and shake it off!!!

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wakeup

Not bashing the OP as we've all made mistakes, but you MUST know your boat. MUST be familiar with how it reacts before getting into situations or pulling people.

I went to a wakeboard camp boat driving school and the drift along with reverse and forward bumping is a big part of the class. It's a good thing if used correctly. But bumping means quick bumps into reverse/forward as required drifting the boat the correct way.

Many previous I/O drivers get into the quick reverse to stop situation.

At the driving school, we had to circle and go past a floating inner tube and make the side of the platform drift into it while stopping the boat. Go do that 10 times in the middle of the lake with busy traffic and wind. I don't think you'll regret it. Under stress is a good place to test things out.

And an unrelated mistake I see people make is something pretty simple. People tend to pull in a rope and wrap it around their arm. Know a teenager who lost his arm doing that. Didn't realize the boat was in gear and rope went under the boat.

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REW
Friends,

I find this site very very useful in many respects, one thing I miss is sharing safety experiences, especially "near misses", when using our boats. I know it's not easy to recreate an incident which normally we try to leave behind but it is also very helpful to understand what happened while sharing the point, administrators of the site will decide.

Here is mine in a sequence of events:

Situation: Wakeboard skiing, skier falls, boat moving around at low speed, increased the speed slightly to hit the boat waves (LXi), approaching the skier on the right of the boat slightly fast, change to reverse for braking, the boat gets closer sidewise to the skier, the boat creates an under-the boat stream (right to left and to the front), the skier tightly attached to the board gets pulled under the boat until stopping the engine, the board presents a wide area for the stream increasing the pull. Wedge in the bottom position might provoque a higher/different stream.

Although I understand the stream was not in the direction of the propeller and therefore no risk of injury by it, the psycological effect for the skier (and the rest in the boat) is way high.

Hope this helps others prevent the situation, approach the skiers without the need of braking with reverse and if the case arises better to keep moving forward around the skier.

Experienced drivers feel free to add for our own benefit.

First of all Slow down, you should not have to approach a skier or swimer at anything above idel unless as mentioned earler to cover from another boat. For injury I still approach slow so as not to disrupt the rider. Second shake it off and enjoy the summer. I think there have been some good ideas on the thread and if you read them and think about them you will be ok especially now that you have scared yourself.

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CedarLakeSkier
I appreciate you sharing this. While this hasn't happened to me, EVERYONE on this site has had something scary/unexpected happen. We should learn from each other and you shouldn't feel stupid. Just don't do it again AND try to think of how to avoid other scenarios (at least 150' from other boats, have ALL kids wear life jackets ALL the time when on board, etc...).

Plus1.gif

I have learned from other posts like this as well as posting some of my own moments. Chances are you don't need to be "schooled" on this as I'm sure you'll never forget it. I also remember seeing a post some time ago where people posted stories and pictures of things being ripped up by a prop (some connected to people while it happened).

Glad no one was hurt.

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fijidaniel
First, it sounds like no one was hurt which everyone here is thankful for.

Second, your problem started with the power turn you likely did to pick up your skier. That is why you needed to gas it over the wakes. To fix that, after the skier falls cut the throttle. Turn the wheel hard and you'll spin in a 180. The wakes will go around you and you can slowly idle to the fallen rider.

I appreciate you sharing this. While this hasn't happened to me, EVERYONE on this site has had something scary/unexpected happen. We should learn from each other and you shouldn't feel stupid. Just don't do it again AND try to think of how to avoid other scenarios (at least 150' from other boats, have ALL kids wear life jackets ALL the time when on board, etc...).

I've never had anything this scary and hope I never will but I DO worry all the time especially when my 5 year old is boarding. Mainly I worry about the other idiots on the lake...they're scary....

Have fun with the season and shake it off!!!

Plus1.gif The problem started with the power turn. If you cut the throttle and then slowly turn around, not only is there not a need for hard braking, but you will also leave the line that you are running smooth for the rest of us and your next rider!

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REW
First, it sounds like no one was hurt which everyone here is thankful for.

Second, your problem started with the power turn you likely did to pick up your skier. That is why you needed to gas it over the wakes. To fix that, after the skier falls cut the throttle. Turn the wheel hard and you'll spin in a 180. The wakes will go around you and you can slowly idle to the fallen rider.

I appreciate you sharing this. While this hasn't happened to me, EVERYONE on this site has had something scary/unexpected happen. We should learn from each other and you shouldn't feel stupid. Just don't do it again AND try to think of how to avoid other scenarios (at least 150' from other boats, have ALL kids wear life jackets ALL the time when on board, etc...).

I've never had anything this scary and hope I never will but I DO worry all the time especially when my 5 year old is boarding. Mainly I worry about the other idiots on the lake...they're scary....

Have fun with the season and shake it off!!!

Plus1.gif The problem started with the power turn. If you cut the throttle and then slowly turn around, not only is there not a need for hard braking, but you will also leave the line that you are running smooth for the rest of us and your next rider!

Plus1.gif

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jetskipro550

Haven't ever had any accidents, but have had so many close calls I can't even count them anymore. Not surprisingly, nearly all involved the old jet skis Whistling.gif

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