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The self-inflating SOS Dan Buoy* resolves the challenge of quickly deploying the traditionally separate pieces of man overboard gear - pole with flag, flotation, drogue, strobe, whistle - by bringing all required pieces together in one compact fluorescent green/yellow unit with a strobe and whistle.
The SOS Dan Buoy is easy to see, easy to hear, easy to stow, and most importantly, easy to deploy - just throw it in the direction of the person in the water. All this when - more than most any other boating situation - time is of the essence. If you've ever experienced it, the short time in which a person's head bobbing in a seaway can disappear from view is extremely sobering.
In just seven seconds, the SOS Dan Buoy self-inflates to become a six foot tall floating spar buoy with an eight foot long high-visibility fluorescent green streamer at its top. The buoy is ballasted to help maintain as vertical an attitude as wind and sea conditions will allow.
Night visibility is enhanced by an automatically activated SOLAS strobe light at the top of the mast, as well as SOLAS light-reflective tape. A whistle helps the person overboard alert you to their position in heavy fog, and the device incorporates hand holds so the crew in the water can hang onto the highly visible buoy.
Overboard survivors tell stories about their frustration at having to swim after MOB devices being blown away from them in severe weather. Unlike other similar products, the Dan Buoy incorproates an exceptionally large drogue to significantly reduce drift in high winds.
The Dan Buoy comes complete with a CO₂ cartridge which you will need to install to make the unit functional.
There are two available deck stowage units available - a Dan Hold plastic mounting bracket, or a Dan Bag flip-top PVC coated fabric bag - either can be rail or bulkhead mounted. See Related Products, below.
The SOS Dan Buoy can be used as the first step in a complete Man Overboard Recovery System consisting of the Dan Buoy location marker, and a retrieval device such as the Reelsling, followed by using the Recovery Ladder for final re-boarding of your crew member. See Related Products.
• Self-inflating - just throw it in the water; no need to open the carrying bag
• Ballasted 6 foot height makes it easy to spot
• Integral water-activated strobe light at upper tip and reflective materials for locating in the dark
• Fluorescent color for locating in the daytime - visible from up to 1 mile, or more
• Fluorescent streamer provides constant fluttering - making it easier-to-spot against the background
• Ideal replacement for a bulky MOB pole hanging off the backstay
• Easy to unpack and re-pack (takes about a minute) for inspection or CO₂ cartridge replacement
• Inflation mechanism has green indicator to confirm a loaded CO₂ cartridge is installed
• Oversized drogue measures 23" x 47" - helps retard drift in windy conditions
• Entire unit is very compact and easy to stow in an easily accessible location
• Buoy has whistle attached
• Arm straps help exhausted swimmers hang on
• Easy to transport between vessels, as necessary
• Uses widely available 33 gram CO₂ cylinder
• Meets ISAF requirements
• Meets applicable SOLAS recommendations
• Satisfies US Sailing Safety Equipment Requirements
• Can withstand 1000 ft drop from rescue aircraft
• Lightweight - just 10 lb
• Compact - 11" x 8" x 3" - the size of a lunch box
A Survivor Speaks...
Every sailor should read this interview with a man overboard survivor on the very sobering lessons learned from going overboard, and the ensuing rescue attempt.
* Dan Buoy — traditionally, a small buoy, sometimes made of cork with a small flag, used to temporarily mark a position at sea — normally to mark a fishing ground, a minesweeping area, or a man overboard. Long–line fishermen use dan buoys to mark ends of their underwater gear. Dan buoys can also be used to mark dive sites, submerged hazards or objects dropped overboard.