PRACTICE RULES & SAFETY

A two person fishing kayak is used to retrieve/return our moored boats off shore. There must be 2 paddlers on the kayak with at least 1 person on shore as a safety spotter.  At all times everyone on the water must wear a PFD—personal flotation device—provided by the Machestics or your own. 

 

The coach/steersperson is in charge of the boat and paddlers and gives boat commands and paddling instructions.  No paddler may coach another paddler on the boat unless specifically asked to do so by a coach.  Bring any concerns privately to the coach. 

 

“Quiet in the boat” is necessary once paddlers are seated to hear commands/coaching. 

When on the water, help can be a long way off.  If someone experiences a medical emergency, it is imperative that everyone remains silent as the steersperson gives directions. 

 

A cell phone (in provided waterproof pouch) and lightning detector must be on the boat for all practices. 

 

FYI Lightning information—there are many myths widely believed and dangerous to follow.  

 

MYTH – IF YOU DON’T SEE CLOUDS OR RAIN, YOU'RE SAFE  

Fact: Lightning can often strike miles from a thunderstorm, far outside the rain or storm cloud.  

 

People have been suddenly struck by lightning, even though the sky above her was clear and blue.  While that may sound like a rare or even freakish event, it's not that uncommon for lightning to travel far from its originating cloud.  In some cases, bolts have struck as much as 25 miles from where they originated. Scientists refer to these wayward streaks of electricity as "bolts from the blue," since it often seems as though the lightning comes out of a clear blue sky. 

 

Bolts from the blue may travel horizontally for several miles before veering towards the ground. A positive lightning bolt can strike anywhere within several miles of a thunderstorm, often in areas experiencing clear or only slightly cloudy skies which is why they are called "bolts from the blue". As a result of their greater power, as well as lack of warning, bolts from the blue are considerably more dangerous. 

 

Who’s at Risk? 

  • 85% of lightning victims are people engaged in outdoor recreation and work activities outside.  

  • 70% of all lightning injuries and fatalities occur in the afternoon.  

  • Most lightning deaths involve people working outdoors and outdoor recreationists.  

 

What to do when lightning is near: 

  • Avoid high ground, water, solitary trees, open spaces, and metallic objects. Search for low ground, avoid ditches or trenches if they contain water, or if the ground is saturated. Seek clumps of shrubs or trees of uniform height.  

  • Outdoor sporting activities/events should be stopped and swimming pools cleared when lightning is within six miles. Wait thirty minutes following the last lightning before leaving your refuge location or resuming activities. 

 

The Machestic safety procedure is: 

  • If the lightning detector activates and denotes 6-12 (miles)-the boat heads back to shore. 

If it does not activate again for 10 minutes the boat can continue practice near the shore,  

 

HOWEVER ANY PADDLER HAS THE RIGHT TO EXIT THE BOAT AT ANY TIME. 

 

  • If the lightning detector activates and denotes 0-6 (miles)- the boat goes back to shore, all paddlers must get out and activity will not resume until 30 minutes have passed with no 0-6 mile activations. 

 

  • If lightning is seen and or thunder heard the boat will go to shore, all paddlers must get out and activity will not resume until 30 minutes have passed with no lightning seen or thunder heard. 

 

  • If at any time any paddler feels unsafe for any reason, the boat will IMMEDIATELY return to shore. 

 

  • If at any time any paddler requests to go to shore, the boat will IMMEDIATELY return to shore. 

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Questions? Email info@machesticdragons.org