You may have heard it said that a life jacket only works when it’s worn! And how true that is – no life jacket is going to be of any use sat in a locker or down below on a bunk instead of being worn. It is also true that a life jacket is only going to be truly effective if it fits correctly. Unlike clothing, it is NOT sensible to buy a life jacket for your child to grow into – it must fit there and then.
It may sound obvious to say – but a life jacket can save a life and it is therefore imperative to get it right – the right kit, fitted correctly and checked regularly.
Here are a few of the key points to consider:
Ensure that the life jacket is tensioned correctly – a firm fit that is still comfortable. You can adjust the life jacket at the side and back. This will make sure that it doesn’t lift or slip from the body. This can also give extra confidence and reassurance to your child.
Fitting the crutch strap firmly means that the life jacket cannot ride up over the face if you go in the water and keeps the jacket in place to support the body. This is particularly significant should the wearer get knocked unconscious as they go into the water.
Once fitted, tuck away any dangling straps – this will stop children fiddling with them or the possibility of them getting caught on something aboard.
If everyone wears a life jacket then your child will learn best practice by default and popping it on will become second nature.
If you’re not sure about the difference between a life jacket and a buoyancy aid then check out our blog for further information. For our range of life jackets and buoyancy aids go to nipperskipper.co.uk/category/safety-gear/ .
We’ve promoted several guides to help ensure that you have fitted your life jackets properly and this one from Survitec, Crewsaver gives very clear imagery to help take you through the process. You can also look at the guide on line HERE.