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Safety And Safety Sausage Talk


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#1 MarkC

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 01:00 PM

With the recent reports of accidents and lost divers, I started to think about permanently adding a safety sausage tube to my standard diving equipment.

As other safety equipment, I use:

1. Whistle
2. Flashlight (day dives also)
3. Glow Stick (night)
4. Safety Sausage (new)
5. Strobe (I do not use one, but does anyone use one besides night dives?)


So, you might be wondering about the flashlight on a day dive thing. back around 1995, Del Mar Aquatics almost lost us. My ex had to abort due to ear issues, and I used my flashlight to get the captains attention. In all of the excitement, I had actually forgotten I had a whistle on my vest. I honestly feel that I would have ended up dead had I not had excellent training, and a survival instinct that day. it was also the same year a lady was “eaten by a shark” on a DMA boat, and we later heard was hit with a boat prop.

Anyways, getting to the point:

Sausage Questions:

1. Does anyone have a safety sausage recommendation? (Brand/model/vendor)
2. What color do you think is best?
3. Length?
4. Do you use a reel with it and extend it as you surface each time or only use as needed?

What else do you use to ensure your own safety?
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“Corona con lima, Corona with lime... Todo el tiempo, hey all of the time... Con mucho gusto, I’m havin such a good time... Corona con lima, Corona with lime...”

#2 cvchief

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 01:53 PM

I have:

Whistle,
flashlight
SMB

As for SMB, I bought a NICE DAN one. It was really tall, had another whistle and a glow stick, but it was huge, so I then bought a smaller one like the DMs use. I have it on a reel of string. I have NEVER used it. The DM deploys an SMB every time someone comes up and the capitan know the SMB. We had a Coz regular dive with up and she shot her SMB to come up. I guess normally she does that. Threw the capitan off as he wasn't expecting it and thought she was from another group. Just delayed her getting picked up a little in the confusion.

I sadly admit I have never shot my sausage...... I should practice it I guess.(Either alone or with someone....) :P It for me is really an emergency item.

I have been sniffing around those Nautilus Radios. They seem cool and gadgety!
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#3 morenita

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 02:00 PM

Mark I always have my sausage with me. The brand and type of sausage and reel is all a matter of personal preference. What works for me might not work for someone else. I like to use the simplest design. My sausage is a Tigullio. It is orange and 120cm or 4 feet long. And a magnetic closure. I inflate with my regulator from the bottom. It inflates and deflates very easy. I personally do not like the type you have to blow up. I have used all types and like this one the most. I also like a reel that is very basic. It is nothing more than a spool with a hole in the middle that will go over my finger to let the line out. I can actually let go of it and it is nuetral bouyant and will just float at the level I am at while the line is going out. A huge improvement over a string wrapped around a weight. I don't like any of the mechanical types. The simpler the better. But every diver will have their own preference.

The other thing I allways have with me is an air alert. A loud horn which attaches to my inflator. Years back while spearfishing way up north the boat lost us. The currents there can be crazy and the captain lost the bubbles. The captain told me the only way they found us was because he listened and kept going toward the sound of the horn. No idea how long we would have been out there without it. I also allways have a mirror. But I keep it simple. for me a sausage is a must. The mirror is small and the air alert is very small and snaps on my inflator. I don't like to have alot of bulky and extra items when diving. Simple is good. I am sure that everyone has seen the diver with everything known strapped to them? Lights, knives etc.

I allways use my sausage but that is because I usually have a group. You should definitely practice using it. The first few times people use theirs they typically struggle somewhat with it until it is comfortable for them. If you need it you will want to be familiar with it.

Allways let the capatin know what color your sausage is and what it looks like if you have one. Just in case you need to use it he will know what to look for.
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#4 MarkC

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 02:42 PM

Chief, the fact that you’ve never had the opportunity to shoot your sausage either while alone or with someone special saddens me. I heard a little tequila helps alleviate those issues, just not while scuba diving. :P

On a serious note Chief – how tall is the one you carry and what color is it? Do you use a spool with it? I can see it throwing off the boat captain. But a great tool also if you’re doing any shore diving.

I would think orange or bright yellow would be the best colors, over red, but what do I know...

I like the idea of a retractable spool, but maybe it would be best to have a manual wind... I have very briefly shopped for them, but with pending trips to CZ and BZ this year, I want to be sure I have a good one.

Thanks for the feedback...

MC
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“Corona con lima, Corona with lime... Todo el tiempo, hey all of the time... Con mucho gusto, I’m havin such a good time... Corona con lima, Corona with lime...”

#5 cvchief

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 03:32 PM

Yea, the small one I have is yellow I think with a just the spool the cord came on. My dm just raps it around the rolled SMB. I think is is around 4 feet. Sort of like a regular on, I think. My DAN ones are huge. Six feet and wide: Posted ImageIt is nice and has another whistle and light stick in the mesh at the bottom. You can fill it from the bottom with your reg. The one I carry just blows up.
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#6 hillbilly

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 03:54 PM

If you recall the boat that broke apart in the middle of the channel, The one persons story was of him using his strobe to finally get the attention of the helicopter pilot, boat captain whichever that finally saw them. We carried a sausage any way and had used it before once in the virgin islands. I do not care if it blows up or inflates with your regulator air when you need it they are great. We have since ordered a strobe after the last incident as my wife has gotten loose in the current once in the Bahamas and it will scare you shi---less to see you wife floating away.
My only hope is we do not end up with so much stuff hanging on our BCd that we get all kind of confused as where , or wt- is this thingie?
By the way it sounded like that group from the busted boat was in the water for three or four hours and somebody was making fun of the way the guy described the ordeal. I know everybody has an opinion but hey.
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#7 MarkC

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 04:25 PM

I can see what your guys are saying...

The strobe, although a device with a finite battery life would not be a bad thing to have... Even better if you were to be swept off on a sunny day and the sun's glare did not allow you to be seen.

The mirror, conversely a great backup, but only good on those sunny days...

Regarding watching your wife floating away, it may sound sick, but I almost wish my ex had. :P

MC
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“Corona con lima, Corona with lime... Todo el tiempo, hey all of the time... Con mucho gusto, I’m havin such a good time... Corona con lima, Corona with lime...”

#8 cvchief

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 04:58 PM

Signal mirrors, as I understand, are awesome. I am going to get one I think. There is a nice one with red side to create a red flash that wouldn't be mistaking as natural. I have heard of divers at night being saved in Coz by camera strobes. If you REALLY want to be safe, I think this is the real deal Nautulis:

Posted Image
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#9 divern2h20

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 05:56 PM

All these things are wonderful as long as the diver surfaces conscious and able to function.
NONE will help a diver that is unconscious. Make sure your buddy either has thier own or knows how to operate what your carrying.
I carry a 3' neon yellow sausage 6" green glow stick ,30'cord on 1# weight, whistle and pelican 4-"C" cell light on ALL dives.
I have a caribeaner that I run the cord thru while clipped to my BC,that way I will always be with the sausage.Only needed once in the Bahamas on a night dive that went bust, 30 min was plenty long floating around in the dark.
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