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10 dumbest boating things I have seen


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Inspired by Tracie's post, I thought I would post up the 10 dumbest things I have seen. Sometimes you see people just being stupid, and sometimes you realize that could have been you.

1. Skiing/tubing through trees. I am not sure why people think this is a good idea, but I routinely see at the beginning of every season someone leading a tube through trees on our lake like a slalom course. Unfortunately I have seen a few leave by ambulance.

2. Non swimmers and life vests. A girl my wife grew up with lost their 5 year old last summer. She was allowed to take her vest off while in the boat, which by the way, is against the law in this state. The girl jumped in after her older brother, and drowned in 5 feet of water. The family was unable to find her in the murky water.

3. People who want to help you launch/land you boat. My father in law is a boater, and brother in law would like to be. They want to be helpful when out boating. A few years ago, despite my telling him not to, my brother in law jumped on the trailer as I was landing the boat to catch it and hook on the rope. As he was standing there, a wake came up from behind, pushing the boat up the trailer and catching his leg between the hull and roller. His leg was not seriously injured, but he passed out from the shock and fell backwards, hitting his head and splitting it open.

4. Riding in the boat on the way to the water. My father in law lives very close to the water. Generally everyone piles in the boat for the short ride to the ramp. We were following a wake boat through the area to the ramp, people riding in the boat were dancing to music. The tower hit a branch from a tree, causing the branch to whip into a rider, who was knocked clear out of the boat onto the ground. She had a broken arm.

5. Letting others park you trailer. I sat in my truck, waiting for a spot to launch, and watched a husband and wife launch their new appearing Crownline. Wife got back into their SUV, started up ramp, and proceeded to drive over the rear of three trailers when parking. She got out and could not believe what had happened. Variation, is my mother in law, with boat on trailer decided to pull to a "better" parking area. She dropped a wheel off the road surface and almost flipped the boat.

6. Towing tubes from the tower. Honestly, I could not see what was wrong with this, except possibly the weight. Last summer, some kids were pulling a tube from the tower. Their apparent object was to make the tube do a 360 around the boat. Towers are engineered to withstand a pull from the rear. Probably never pulled forward on your tower before. As they got the tube going forward of the boat (by putting the boat in reverse at some point, which honestly took some talent) the tower folded forward crushing the windshield. That is going to be hard to explain.

7. Outboards and skiing/tubing. Every year I see the same thing, usually on a pontoon. tube rope or ski rope attached to stern eyelet of boat, darn near next to the motor. This never ends well. They sell those tripods that put an eyelet up high for a reason.

8. Straps or the plug. We have all done some variation, forget to put the plug in etc. Few years ago watched a guy in a bass boat launching. forgot to undo the trailer straps. I was surprised the th trailer weight was enough to pull the transom under water, but sure enough it did.

9. Jumping other boats wakes. Several years ago, someone flipped a 18 ft open bow on our lake. This story starts bad, and gets worse. The boat was observed trying to jump other boats wakes. There were children aboard, who were injured. Dad, apparently oblivious to the plight of his kids, with the boat still semi-floating swims to another boat, apparently a friend, and ties on a rope. They then try to pull the other boat back on top of the water. Rope breaks, strikes passenger in another boat who was also "helping." Meanwhile, in effort to try and attach more ropes, second boat is swamped. Water patrol arrested 11 people, and issued 36 citations. No one died, which was a miracle.

10. People riding in boat while launching. Sitting on river, waiting for dock to clear to unload passengers. I see a 20 ft open bow I/O at top of ramp, pulled by Astro mini-van. Boat is full of 8-10 people, gear etc. Driver only in van. Ramp wet. About half-way down, van brakes lock, driver loses control, jacknifes just before water. Boat and trailer strike another boat just at bottom of ramp, keeping first boat from rolling over, most passengers end up in water. A lot of damage, few people went to the hospital.

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Inspired by Tracie's post, I thought I would post up the 10 dumbest things I have seen. Sometimes you see people just being stupid, and sometimes you realize that could have been you.

1. Skiing/tubing through trees. I am not sure why people think this is a good idea, but I routinely see at the beginning of every season someone leading a tube through trees on our lake like a slalom course. Unfortunately I have seen a few leave by ambulance.

2. Non swimmers and life vests. A girl my wife grew up with lost their 5 year old last summer. She was allowed to take her vest off while in the boat, which by the way, is against the law in this state. The girl jumped in after her older brother, and drowned in 5 feet of water. The family was unable to find her in the murky water.

3. People who want to help you launch/land you boat. My father in law is a boater, and brother in law would like to be. They want to be helpful when out boating. A few years ago, despite my telling him not to, my brother in law jumped on the trailer as I was landing the boat to catch it and hook on the rope. As he was standing there, a wake came up from behind, pushing the boat up the trailer and catching his leg between the hull and roller. His leg was not seriously injured, but he passed out from the shock and fell backwards, hitting his head and splitting it open.

4. Riding in the boat on the way to the water. My father in law lives very close to the water. Generally everyone piles in the boat for the short ride to the ramp. We were following a wake boat through the area to the ramp, people riding in the boat were dancing to music. The tower hit a branch from a tree, causing the branch to whip into a rider, who was knocked clear out of the boat onto the ground. She had a broken arm.

5. Letting others park you trailer. I sat in my truck, waiting for a spot to launch, and watched a husband and wife launch their new appearing Crownline. Wife got back into their SUV, started up ramp, and proceeded to drive over the rear of three trailers when parking. She got out and could not believe what had happened. Variation, is my mother in law, with boat on trailer decided to pull to a "better" parking area. She dropped a wheel off the road surface and almost flipped the boat.

6. Towing tubes from the tower. Honestly, I could not see what was wrong with this, except possibly the weight. Last summer, some kids were pulling a tube from the tower. Their apparent object was to make the tube do a 360 around the boat. Towers are engineered to withstand a pull from the rear. Probably never pulled forward on your tower before. As they got the tube going forward of the boat (by putting the boat in reverse at some point, which honestly took some talent) the tower folded forward crushing the windshield. That is going to be hard to explain.

7. Outboards and skiing/tubing. Every year I see the same thing, usually on a pontoon. tube rope or ski rope attached to stern eyelet of boat, darn near next to the motor. This never ends well. They sell those tripods that put an eyelet up high for a reason.

8. Straps or the plug. We have all done some variation, forget to put the plug in etc. Few years ago watched a guy in a bass boat launching. forgot to undo the trailer straps. I was surprised the th trailer weight was enough to pull the transom under water, but sure enough it did.

9. Jumping other boats wakes. Several years ago, someone flipped a 18 ft open bow on our lake. This story starts bad, and gets worse. The boat was observed trying to jump other boats wakes. There were children aboard, who were injured. Dad, apparently oblivious to the plight of his kids, with the boat still semi-floating swims to another boat, apparently a friend, and ties on a rope. They then try to pull the other boat back on top of the water. Rope breaks, strikes passenger in another boat who was also "helping." Meanwhile, in effort to try and attach more ropes, second boat is swamped. Water patrol arrested 11 people, and issued 36 citations. No one died, which was a miracle.

10. People riding in boat while launching. Sitting on river, waiting for dock to clear to unload passengers. I see a 20 ft open bow I/O at top of ramp, pulled by Astro mini-van. Boat is full of 8-10 people, gear etc. Driver only in van. Ramp wet. About half-way down, van brakes lock, driver loses control, jacknifes just before water. Boat and trailer strike another boat just at bottom of ramp, keeping first boat from rolling over, most passengers end up in water. A lot of damage, few people went to the hospital.

Last year i saw a boat with 5 or 6 people in it doing really tight turns they managed to dunk the front under water. we saw the prop come out of the water as the motor wound up pretty good ! i am not sure if it was a DD or VD

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These are good but I disagree with number 10. I always put my wife and kids in the boat while I back the boat down the ramp. When we get the boat in the water, the wife backs it out and gets out of the way at the ramp. With only two of us, the only other options are to keep the kids in the car (very dangerous - not enough time to get them out if the car went into the water) or put them on the dock unattended (not a good idea, either).

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11. While trailing their I/O boat they forget to put the out drive up and start heading up the boat ramp. Grinding down the rudder and prop.

12. Forget to put their truck in park and set the E-brake to step out of the truck to lauch their boat. Then get knocked out by the door and watch the truck with the trailer behind roll into the drink.

13. Clothes line a jet skier, while the jet skier is tring to jump the wake behind the boat towing me.

Edited by BLACK PEARL
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See this all too often: People riding up on the deck of a closed bow boat with feet hanging over the side.

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14. Skiing without an observer. When I was about 12 I was out with my dad and uncle in my uncle's BRAND NEW Sidewinder O/B. Dad was driving, uncle skiing for the first time behind his new boat. Oncoming boat has husband skiing, wife driving, and dog as observer. No mirror either. She's facing backwards watching husband ski and driving opposite of the counter-clockwise traffic pattern on the lake. Dad is staying to the right, but we're starting to get pinched up along the shoreline as she is straying to her left. Finally Dad has to just kill the motor as we are up into the rocks now with no where to go. She sees us last minute and turns hard right. I remember seeing their boat kind of skipping across the water sideways right at me on the observer's side. Smashed right into my side of the boat, almost flipping us. Other than some cuts and bruises, no injuries. Neither boat sank, but both were split wide open on the impact side. Lucky. First morning of our vacation, too.

15. General alcohol-related stupidity. Two of those SA-WEEEET rocker jet boats on the lake spraying eachother with their rooster tails and rodding around, goosing the throttle off of eachother's wakes, etc. One misjudges his steering angle when goosing it and hits the back side of the other and proceeds to drive up and over the other boat. Both boats towed to shore with one unconscious guy with a nice head injury laid out on the bow. Never heard the outcome.

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These are good but I disagree with number 10. I always put my wife and kids in the boat while I back the boat down the ramp. When we get the boat in the water, the wife backs it out and gets out of the way at the ramp. With only two of us, the only other options are to keep the kids in the car (very dangerous - not enough time to get them out if the car went into the water) or put them on the dock unattended (not a good idea, either).

The problem that boater ran into was way overloading the trailer weight for a mini-van. There was no reason to have 8-10 people in the boat, except they to lazy to have them wait on the dock. Your situation is a little different, having one person in the boat is a good idea, and I am sure your kids don't weigh all that much.

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Good thread!

In the spirit of #3 people helping, my neighbour trying to undo the hitch pin on the bottom of ramp while I'm doing my last check for plugs and stuff. I guess he wanted to launch the trailer too. Lucky the caughter pin was jammed and I stopped him in time.

Edited by Pondking
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The aftermath of a Dad not realizing the distance between the transom and the rocky shoreline was MUCH shorter than the distance between the transom and his two sons on tubes.....

Bad outcome :(

P6080094.jpg

Edited by jayjoans
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These are good but I disagree with number 10. I always put my wife and kids in the boat while I back the boat down the ramp. When we get the boat in the water, the wife backs it out and gets out of the way at the ramp. With only two of us, the only other options are to keep the kids in the car (very dangerous - not enough time to get them out if the car went into the water) or put them on the dock unattended (not a good idea, either).

The problem that boater ran into was way overloading the trailer weight for a mini-van. There was no reason to have 8-10 people in the boat, except they to lazy to have them wait on the dock. Your situation is a little different, having one person in the boat is a good idea, and I am sure your kids don't weigh all that much.

Okay, good point.

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Inspired by Tracie's post, I thought I would post up the 10 dumbest things I have seen. Sometimes you see people just being stupid, and sometimes you realize that could have been you.

1. Skiing/tubing through trees. I am not sure why people think this is a good idea, but I routinely see at the beginning of every season someone leading a tube through trees on our lake like a slalom course. Unfortunately I have seen a few leave by ambulance.

2. Non swimmers and life vests. A girl my wife grew up with lost their 5 year old last summer. She was allowed to take her vest off while in the boat, which by the way, is against the law in this state. The girl jumped in after her older brother, and drowned in 5 feet of water. The family was unable to find her in the murky water.

3. People who want to help you launch/land you boat. My father in law is a boater, and brother in law would like to be. They want to be helpful when out boating. A few years ago, despite my telling him not to, my brother in law jumped on the trailer as I was landing the boat to catch it and hook on the rope. As he was standing there, a wake came up from behind, pushing the boat up the trailer and catching his leg between the hull and roller. His leg was not seriously injured, but he passed out from the shock and fell backwards, hitting his head and splitting it open.

4. Riding in the boat on the way to the water. My father in law lives very close to the water. Generally everyone piles in the boat for the short ride to the ramp. We were following a wake boat through the area to the ramp, people riding in the boat were dancing to music. The tower hit a branch from a tree, causing the branch to whip into a rider, who was knocked clear out of the boat onto the ground. She had a broken arm.

5. Letting others park you trailer. I sat in my truck, waiting for a spot to launch, and watched a husband and wife launch their new appearing Crownline. Wife got back into their SUV, started up ramp, and proceeded to drive over the rear of three trailers when parking. She got out and could not believe what had happened. Variation, is my mother in law, with boat on trailer decided to pull to a "better" parking area. She dropped a wheel off the road surface and almost flipped the boat.

6. Towing tubes from the tower. Honestly, I could not see what was wrong with this, except possibly the weight. Last summer, some kids were pulling a tube from the tower. Their apparent object was to make the tube do a 360 around the boat. Towers are engineered to withstand a pull from the rear. Probably never pulled forward on your tower before. As they got the tube going forward of the boat (by putting the boat in reverse at some point, which honestly took some talent) the tower folded forward crushing the windshield. That is going to be hard to explain.

7. Outboards and skiing/tubing. Every year I see the same thing, usually on a pontoon. tube rope or ski rope attached to stern eyelet of boat, darn near next to the motor. This never ends well. They sell those tripods that put an eyelet up high for a reason.

8. Straps or the plug. We have all done some variation, forget to put the plug in etc. Few years ago watched a guy in a bass boat launching. forgot to undo the trailer straps. I was surprised the th trailer weight was enough to pull the transom under water, but sure enough it did.

9. Jumping other boats wakes. Several years ago, someone flipped a 18 ft open bow on our lake. This story starts bad, and gets worse. The boat was observed trying to jump other boats wakes. There were children aboard, who were injured. Dad, apparently oblivious to the plight of his kids, with the boat still semi-floating swims to another boat, apparently a friend, and ties on a rope. They then try to pull the other boat back on top of the water. Rope breaks, strikes passenger in another boat who was also "helping." Meanwhile, in effort to try and attach more ropes, second boat is swamped. Water patrol arrested 11 people, and issued 36 citations. No one died, which was a miracle.

10. People riding in boat while launching. Sitting on river, waiting for dock to clear to unload passengers. I see a 20 ft open bow I/O at top of ramp, pulled by Astro mini-van. Boat is full of 8-10 people, gear etc. Driver only in van. Ramp wet. About half-way down, van brakes lock, driver loses control, jacknifes just before water. Boat and trailer strike another boat just at bottom of ramp, keeping first boat from rolling over, most passengers end up in water. A lot of damage, few people went to the hospital.

wow, you have seen a whole lot of bad things happen to people. I think you are bad luck. :)

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I totally disagree with skiing w/o a observer. 80% of our trips are with just me and the chica, it's legal and safe to a point.

1. Anybody who wants to tie up a loading or unloading dock with their boat better be prepared for my chica to walk over their boat, seats or fiberglass. Only a few people have ever said anything, and it wasn't a bright idea ROFL.gif

2. Tubers doing S pattern down a narrow line, my God, get a skill, learn to ride or ride in the boat.

3. Always roll down windows at ramp, that if things go bad and the door are locked, watched this one unfold Clap.gif

4. Towing with Wakeboards in Rack, this one always amazes me.

5. No blower engaged and/or engine compartments down at waterside fuel stations :Doh:

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This would be a dumb thing I have done. Gave my oldest son a wicked spiral fracture on his ring finger because I let the tube line go slack on a whip. When the line came tight around his finger that was the end of football for the next 6 months.

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This would be a dumb thing I have done. Gave my oldest son a wicked spiral fracture on his ring finger because I let the tube line go slack on a whip. When the line came tight around his finger that was the end of football for the next 6 months.

See above, stope the insanity, stop tubing. Thumbup.gifBiggrin.gif

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I totally disagree with skiing w/o a observer. 80% of our trips are with just me and the chica, it's legal and safe to a point.

I have no problem with this either, and actually ski this way quite often in the course. Takes a driver that knows how to use the mirror. The problem stated earlier with regard to this applies to ANYONE who faces backward while driving to watch their skier. This has got to be one of the top ones for sure.

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We often anchor just off a small island at our lake and during the day, and a lot of boaters pass. Once a rental pontoon with about 6 BIG women up on the front of the pontoon was passing the island, just as another ski boat was passing. Guess what happened? With all that weight on the front. The front speared way under the water from the other boats rollers and the rear came several feet out of the water!!! I laugh everytime I think about that. It was one of those moments I guess you had to be there, but that there was funny!!! :lol::lol::lol::lol::lol::lol::lol::lol:

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I totally disagree with skiing w/o a observer. 80% of our trips are with just me and the chica, it's legal and safe to a point.

I had a buddy who was semi-professional. Really not that much he couldn't do, and despite his talent and sense of adventure DID have common sense and for the most knew his limits. One day though ended up having his board break on a hard landing and end up completely fracturing his left femur and almost bleed out as a result. He was lucky he didn't sever his femoral artery worse than he did otherwise he would have been dead.

My point? Thank God there was an observer. It was a helluva time cutting him out of his bindings, putting a tourniquet on in the water (he had to be stabilized before we moved him and riskfurther tearing the artery before it the flow could be tied off). There is no way a single driver could have done this alone.

Despite this being anecdotal and an extreme one at that they don't call them accidents because they are planned. What if a intermediate rider does a lip slide, catches an edge, knocks out in a freak event and aspirates water into his lungs. 1 man cpr is not fun. It's always good to have one person drive, and one person with the victim in my opinion. Maybe for 95% of the cases it works out fine having only a driver, but I wouldn't encourage it.

3. Always roll down windows at ramp, that if things go bad and the door are locked, watched this one unfold Clap.gif

I couldn't agree with this more. If I am backing the boat up, I also like to have my door unlatched. I actually like opening the door and looking back down the ramp so I can see directly and also have a clear line of communication with a spotter (or person monitoring in the boat) if I have one present.

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I totally disagree with skiing w/o a observer. 80% of our trips are with just me and the chica, it's legal and safe to a point.

1. Anybody who wants to tie up a loading or unloading dock with their boat better be prepared for my chica to walk over their boat, seats or fiberglass. Only a few people have ever said anything, and it wasn't a bright idea ROFL.gif

2. Tubers doing S pattern down a narrow line, my God, get a skill, learn to ride or ride in the boat.

3. Always roll down windows at ramp, that if things go bad and the door are locked, watched this one unfold Clap.gif

4. Towing with Wakeboards in Rack, this one always amazes me.

5. No blower engaged and/or engine compartments down at waterside fuel stations :Doh:

Don't know the situation down in Texas, but it's very illegal here in Washington.

Edited by ffdawg
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I never said riding w/o observer was the best practice, in fact the exact phrase was "safe to a point". I will agree that an observer or two is much safer. However, where I do ride, there is decent traffic in a small area, that could help if necessary. We have went through the scenarios. I am confident, I could do what is necessary, I am more worried that the chica might have issues getting me back into the boat if totally unconscious (I have not missed many meals Biggrin.gif) and have discussed contigency plans.

Hell driving in Dallas is not safe but I do it. Biggrin.gif I plan proactively and hope for the best. I refuse to go through life scared.

Edited by auto
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5. No blower engaged and/or engine compartments down at waterside fuel stations :Doh:

What's this? You have to open your engine compartment when you fill your boat? I realize you should run the blower before you start the engine, every time (not that I do) but what does it have to do with the fueling? Dontknow.gif

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We were coming in to load up a few years back on our jetskis (pre-BU days) and there was a family of folks that had just put there boat in the water. You had to be there to see this! The boat was about a 1960 model of some sort with an outboard and looked every bit it's age. There were probably 8 people in this boat that I would guesstimate at about 14 feet long and 5 feet wide. There were two more in the water on each side of the motor, one of which was the driver/owners son. Someone had forgotten to put the old transom plug in and the SS Redneck was quickly sinking....There must have been 50 lbs of garbage floating in the boat including many beer cans.

Well, junior had the drain plug and was attempting to put it in. He dove down several times and finally got it. He popped up and said "Got it Dad!" Now keep in mind he is still hanging on to the back of the boat right beside the motor. Dad proceeds to fire her up right at that moment! Shocking.gif I was maybe 20 feet away taking all of this in and I nearly wet myself! I thought for sure that poor kid had just lost a leg or foot or worse. Thank GOD he miraculously did not get hurt. He screamed DAD!! at the top of his lungs and Dad looked around and finally shut the engine off. The son, who was maybe 11 years old, was crying hysterically. You know what Dad did? He yelled at the kid! He said "How the hell was I supposed to know you were there!!" They finally decided the only way to get the water out of the boat was to re-load it on the trailer and pull the plug back out. (no bilge pump of course). The boat was half full of water and was so heavy they could not get it all the way on the trailer. When they attempted to pull up the ramp the rear of the boat fell off and landed right on the prop!!

I have never to this day seen anything on a boat ramp to rival this....

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5. No blower engaged and/or engine compartments down at waterside fuel stations :Doh:

What's this? You have to open your engine compartment when you fill your boat? I realize you should run the blower before you start the engine, every time (not that I do) but what does it have to do with the fueling? Dontknow.gif

Perhaps, I was not clear, I stated on water fueling. You don't have to open the engine compartment, I just make it a habit, and a good chance to check fluid levels. Where do you think fumes accumulate at when starting?

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5. No blower engaged and/or engine compartments down at waterside fuel stations :Doh:

What's this? You have to open your engine compartment when you fill your boat? I realize you should run the blower before you start the engine, every time (not that I do) but what does it have to do with the fueling? Dontknow.gif

Perhaps, I was not clear, I stated on water fueling. You don't have to open the engine compartment, I just make it a habit, and a good chance to check fluid levels. Where do you think fumes accumulate at when starting?

It certainly can't hurt and might be slightly beneficial, but opening the engine cover isn't going to do much for gasoline fumes as they have a vapor density in the 3-4 range making them heavier than air so they will settle in the bottom of the engine compartment. Using the blower is the most effective way to remove them.

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5. No blower engaged and/or engine compartments down at waterside fuel stations :Doh:

What's this? You have to open your engine compartment when you fill your boat? I realize you should run the blower before you start the engine, every time (not that I do) but what does it have to do with the fueling? Dontknow.gif

Perhaps, I was not clear, I stated on water fueling. You don't have to open the engine compartment, I just make it a habit, and a good chance to check fluid levels. Where do you think fumes accumulate at when starting?

It certainly can't hurt and might be slightly beneficial, but opening the engine cover isn't going to do much for gasoline fumes as they have a vapor density in the 3-4 range making them heavier than air so they will settle in the bottom of the engine compartment. Using the blower is the most effective way to remove them.

Totally Agree. My point was aimed at the dumbasses who have to be yelled at by the dock diva's to turn on their damn blower. Biggrin.gif

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