Re: Safety gear placement
If you are out of Newport, I would be happy to show you what I have in my 29 pilothouse. I fish alone with my 14 year old son and safety was a paramount concern for me and the moms. Everyone has a different threshold and budget for safety stuff so what worked for me to sleep easy may be different for others.
I am on my second season and made a few changes to the safety layout. All the boats I have had or been on are different so suggesting a specific layout is tough. I generally think of it in a kind of tiered way based on the level of urgency of the issue. For example:
1) things immediately available and on my person and first mate attached to our life jackets. (For mob, entanglement, etc)
—water strobe, wireless kill switch, PLB, small knife, whistle
2) things I can get to in 10 seconds. (Fire, abandon ship, collision, man in water, capsize)
—ditch bag (Epirb, flares, food, spare vhf, first aid)
—the red button on the DSC VHF
—Spare Air bottle and mask
—life raft (I chose the valise over canister for several reasons - weight and accessibility being primary with concern over the hydrostatic release failing to deploy secondary)
—throwable life ring
3) things I can get to in under 30 seconds (injuries, damage, taking on water)
—first aid kit (separates into common and urgent as well as rare and ‘can wait’)
—leak stop, bungs, stay afloat, patches ring clamps, etc.
4) things I can get to eventually
—stuff like a spare anchor, sea anchor
—medicine, emergency food, water
—tools for electrical repair, jump start battery, spare fuel
—fuel filters, engine consumables, spare gas.
The list goes on but that is how I think about it. I am sure I will find another way to go overboard next year. Already on the list is a AIS transponder.
I learned a lot browsing the forums and am sure others will chime in.
Hope that helps.