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Water safety body to advise at show

17th February 2009

For those longing for hot-weather water-based pursuits, this week's Boat Show will give visitors to the RDS a chance to look forward to the summer when Ireland's world-class waterways can be enjoyed to the full. Visitors to Irish WaterSafety's stand (Q34) will have an opportunity to make safety a priority from a variety of information resources and personnel.

Budgeting for safety equipment and training for any newly purchased craft is key to staying safe on the water. It is vital to be able to swim and have onboard the necessary safety equipment and know how to use it through regular training.
Wearing a lifejacket at all times when you are engaged in aquatic related pursuits will not only buy you peace of mind but also the time you need in the event of an incident.
There are a number of safety issues that the public should be aware of in regard to manually or automatically inflating lifejackets, as they require a regular maintenance programme to ensure that they operate correctly:

- Ensure the CO2 Cartridge has not been partially or wholly unscrewed from its housing
- Ensure all buckles, fasteners, crotch strap and webbing straps are functioning correctly and in good order
- Check that their lights, if fitted are operating correctly
- Ensure the lifejacket is adjusted for your body size
- Check that the automatic inflating device has not been triggered accidentally or has been damaged
- Always wear them over your oilskins or other protective clothing
- After use rinse them off in fresh water protecting the soluble bobbin or cartridge if fitted and then hang them up vertically in a dry atmosphere.
- When wearing a lifejacket, always use a crotch strap which should run between the legs and adjust the straps according to manufacturers instructons.

Guidelines on the selection and usage of Lifejackets is available under the Guides
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