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Old 22nd August 2007, 01:36 PM   #1
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Default Accidents

Have you ever had a accident while you were sailing? What was your worst experience?
I personally think that windsurf (in normal conditions) is not dangerous, but my family is a llittle bit scared when I sail. Does anyone know how many people has die while sailing in the last few years?
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Old 22nd August 2007, 04:06 PM   #2
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This is an interesting thread.

I think everybody was in bigger or smaller troubles at some point when windsurfing. IMO the bigger water (open sea or large lakes) and waves the more troubles you can get into. When it's very cold you can get into troubles even on smaller waters.

I think it is very important to know and trust your equipment. And your spot. In strong wind also keep monitoring how tired you are. I wear a vest at all times (never had an issue of not being able to swim from under the sail).
And difficult situations give you experience and make you stronger, so I wouldn't avoid them at all cost.

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Old 22nd August 2007, 04:19 PM   #3
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Traffic is 1 BIG danger
- go to a place like Leucate in summer when its really crowded (some 1000 surfers). The traffic alone is dangerous, lots of -can't really surf AND whatch where the're going- types out there. Luckily not too much happens too often, but there are lots of close calls.

Radical conditions another
(like >=WF4 and big gear and big chop/waves)
(flat water and gusting in the likes of WF 2-9 (can really catch you somewhat by surprise))
- getting hurt can be real easy, just don't concentrate for a sec or 2 -> cracked rib or something else.
- seen people fall in their sails and come onshore bleading in gushes
- seen people have a second breakfast (the boom and then the bits and pieces that used to be firmly connected to their gums)
- dislocated all kind of things etc.

Introduction to Guy Cribbs Carve Gybe DVD: "Windsurfing is a dangerous sport that can be fatal"...

As soon as you start really going for it-> impact vest, boots, kneepads, helmet, facegaurd, ...
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Old 22nd August 2007, 05:46 PM   #4
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I know of a windsurfer in South Australia that disappeared a couple of years ago - all they found was a shredded sail, harness etc with some blood - presumed it was white pointer shark. Otherwise the greatest risk is damage caused by wipe outs in surf or speed runs. Many sailors now use helmets.

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Old 22nd August 2007, 06:00 PM   #5
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Location: Bangkok, Thailand
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My fin crashed a plastic bag or bamboo caused me catapult so many times. But it'll never been your problem if you don't panic.

I got it 2 times.

First time I was so stupid. I just fell without crashing and I let go my boom then escaped toward the top of the 10sq.m. sail. So you can imagine, it's 4 meters distance instead of 1 meter if I escaped the side way.

Second time was a hard crash. It was very windy and I was pushing it hard trying to beat 2 of my friends, then my fin crashed with a big plastic bag and I was thrown through my sail and end up covered by the sail. My harness line was twisted and lie across a batten so it's very hard to un-hook. I was a bit panick and push it like crazy trying to unhook it coz I cannot hold my breath anymore. Then I found an air bag under my sail enough to breath just one time. I stopped panick finally and found that it's actually very easy to unhook and swim out.

I crashed so many time after that but I've never been panic since then and found that it's actually very easy to escape doesn't matter how hard I crashed it.

So I think the most important thing is "Don't panic" and you'll be safe.

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Old 22nd August 2007, 09:20 PM   #6
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Thumbs down pitchpole and the dreaded foot only in front strap trap..

in cabarete i was just initiating a gybe , i had looked around to see if the coast was clear and there was this guy to leeward of me bearing off on a broad reach so I headed up to bleed some speed off and clear this guy ,
I pulled my back foot out of ther strap and this guy who i though was below and clear was right there, i would have hit him.
i turned up hard and then off again and tyhe guy was still right there !!! a gust hit and being on broad reach ,i pitched over the front of the board front foot in ... the pain was agonizing, i was over the fornt of the board , my foot still in the strap...finally the board flipped over.
i headed to the beach popped a few advil and iced my foot, i contunied to sail but was very sore.
months later when the swelling in my foot went away , my knee started bothering me and it hasnt gone away i figure i may have torn ligaments on my foor but i also affected the cartilage in my knee


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Old 22nd August 2007, 10:38 PM   #7
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Location: Dallas, Texas USA
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Depends on what normal is and how hard you push yourself.

Surf sailing & freestyle can have risks, but recreational lake or sea sailing is pretty safe if there isn't much boat traffic and the weather is good (not too cold or too windy). 90% of my windsurfing injuries have occured on the beach (flying / loose sails, sharp objects, rocks, etc.)

Never anything on the water that caused me to miss any sailing except one day for a sprained ankle at the Columbia River gorge 22 years ago. Been sailing and racing for 24 years, averaging about 50 days a year on the water.
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Old 22nd August 2007, 11:35 PM   #8
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i've been sailing for a while and i've never seen any windsurf injure themselves badly, i've seen a kitesurfer have to be taken in an ambulance once but i dont think it was too serious. I find even in really bads wipeouts i never do more than just the odd bruise, mainly i find equipment breaks more than poeple, e.g my brother breaking 2 booms in 3 sessions after a few bad catapults. for me number 1 cause of injury is slicing feet on the fins!!! pain! however windsurfing really is an "as dangerous as you make it" sport.
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Old 23rd August 2007, 12:33 AM   #9
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i once dislocated my ankle form foward and crashing bad with foot in strap.. :S
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Old 23rd August 2007, 06:42 AM   #10
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Thumbs down

One time I was sailing in unfamiliar waters going over some rocks. Turned out the wave swell was so large that as I was planing the rocks sucked dry. In a flash I was at planing speed over dry rock. Needless to say I went over the handle bars onto the rocks. Cracked a rib. But the worst part was it was just off the beach with a bunch of people watching.....
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