Wear Your PFD All the Time, says NIOSH

Jan 3, 2014

Of the 178 deaths from fishermen falling overboard between 2000-2012, only one was wearing a PFD according to CDC.

These "oilskins" with built-in floatation were well received by the gillnetters who tried them. They're made by Norwegian-based Regatta. The US Coast Guard has not yet approved them, but encourages fishermen to wear them anyway and keep other approved devices on board.
Credit www.Regatta.no

Fishing is one of the most dangerous jobs in the United States. Last year the Bureau of Labor Statistics ranked fishing as the second most dangerous profession, behind logging, based on the number of fatalities.  

Between 2000 and 2012, there were 623 commercial fishing related deaths nationwide, according to a database run by the National Institute for Occupational Health and Safety. NIOSH has been studying the incidents that led to those deaths carefully, and believes hundreds of lives might be saved if more people would wear their PFD’s. 

KDLG’s Dave Bendinger has more:

An interesting weekend read can be found here. Lobsterman John Aldridge survived 12 hours in the Atlantic last July. Aldridge was alone on deck when he went over, and stayed afloat by trapping air in his boots and tucking them under his arms.

Links to NIOSH "PFDs That Work" for different gear groups:

Trawlers, click here:  http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/docs/2013-109/

Gillnetters, click here: http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/docs/2013-107/

Longliners, click here: http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/docs/2013-108/

Crabbers, click here: http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/docs/2013-106/

For a general overview, click here: http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/docs/2013-131/