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Boathouse Hacks: The Safety Card
by row2k hackers
posted on July 18, 2012

The Safety Card, on duty. (photo thanks to Ann Schley)

Boathouse Hacks: Clipping Your Lines
(July 6, 2012)

Trailer Tricks: The Bottle Bumper
(June 20, 2012)

Rower Tricks: The Sock-ed Water Bottle
(June 13, 2012)

Rigger Tricks: Truck-Powered Course Removal
(June 6, 2012)

Tool Hack: Wakamole Implements
(May 23, 2012)

Rower Tricks: Boat-Strap It!
(May 2, 2012)

Boathouse Hacks: DIY Bow Lights
(April 25, 2012)

Rigger Tricks: The Skeg Re-Thread
(April 18, 2012)

Rigger Tricks: Zip-Tied Heels
(April 11, 2012)

Rigger Tricks: Theft-Proofing Outboards
(March 21, 2012)

Rower Tricks: Hide Technique with Darker Kit
(March 14, 2012)

Training Hack: The Erg Ab Roller
(March 7, 2012)

Trailer Tricks: Fast Times at the Filling Station
(February 29, 2012)

Rigger Tricks: Color-Coding with Electrical Tape
(February 22, 2012)

Boathouse Hacks: Swiss Nut Helmet
(February 15, 2012)

Boathouse Hacks: The Stick Board
(February 8, 2012)

Tool Hack: The Wing Nut Stick
(February 1, 2012)

Rower Tricks: Making SURE You're Up for AM Practice
(January 25, 2012)

Trailer Tricks: The Strap Wheel
(January 17, 2012)

contributed by John FX Flynn, row2k

Have a big club, with lots of coaches, or a tricky stretch of water, with lots of details to remember, or just a really thorough safety plan that you want handy at all times? Here's a great hack for just that sort of thing, sent in by Ann Schley from the Minneapolis Rowing Club: the Coaches Launch Safety Card.

Ann's club has lots of teams, from juniors to masters, rec rowers to racers, and summertime can be pretty busy, with crews out on the water at all times and lots of different folks taking the launches out to coach the various groups. To keep everyone on the same page--literally--each launch has a laminated, two-sided info sheet that includes things like phone numbers for coaches and club officers, tips for starting the motor, action plans for different types of emergency situations, directions for calling the Coast Guard and the Lock & Dam folks on the river, advice for providing first aid, and even a few suggestions on how to avoid waking other crews.

A lot of that info would be useful to any club or team, but the MRC Safety Card also includes a river map that highlights safe areas to pull crews off the river in the event of a storm as well as spots that can be most easily accessed by emergency services in the case of a serious injury or incident. It would be a lot to remember in a tense situation if something were to happen, but the Safety Card lays it all out so everyone can have the details they need, should they ever need them.

The MRC folks tie the Safety Card right into every launch, next to the motor, so it is never out of reach and is always handy, just in case.

Have a good way to keep safety a priority at your place? Share your tips--and hacks--in the comments below.

Have a great rowing hack for future inclusion here? Send it to us!


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07/20/2012  1:07:49 PM
Minneapolis RC is a large and successful club situated on the upper Mississippi River. It is in a unique situation: few recreational boaters, but the occasional aggregate barge, irregular stream flow, a dam downstream and navigational bouys. Another concern is access to the river for rescue crews. The club has done an outstanding job in upgrading safety standards and preparing and equipping those of us coaching there. Coach and athlete training, safety seminars, properly equipped launches and a strong policy for cold water and high river flow are all part of the safety culture. Kudos to all club leadership. John Davis