Kill Switches :: ALWAYS WEAR THEM!
Just wanted to put up a quick post about how important it is to wear your kill switch and life jacket [preferable connected to each other] whenever you are running the big motor on your boat…
I was fishing as a co-angler in the BWS Regional last weekend at Neely Henry. While fishing on the lower end of the lake, I saw a boat on plane blow across the ledge we were fishing. I was watching them head further out of the creek to see where they were headed and they suddenly veered to the right. At first, I couldn’t tell what was going on. After the third donut that their boat did, we knew something was wrong. We put our jackets on as quickly as we could and ran to where the boat was circling. Both guys were in the water with the boat circling close by. Luckily, they were both OK. However, the boat had a full tank of gas, and was in a tight circle at what I’m guessing was wide open throttle [150 ProXS]. After pulling them both out of the water, removing some treble hooks from one guy [my boater was really clutch] and fishing out some of their tackle that was floating around, we took them both to the nearest marina. Both of their phones were soaked and they didn’t know any numbers to call. They had been fishing a local pot tournament and were running back to their weigh in. After getting them squared away, we went back to our spot and the boat was still running. After an hour and a half it finally ran out of gas and was able to be towed back in. I’m still not sure what caused the boat to turn off course in the first place, but luckily the motor was pinned all the way to the right keeping it in a tight donut.
To make a long story short… Lots of things can happen when running full speed in a bass boat – wakes, mechanical failure, other boaters, etc… In the case that you are thrown out of the boat, you definitely want it to STOP where it is. Had we not been close by, these guys might not have made it – and these were perfect water conditions – 80degree water, 90 degree air temp, no wind/chop.
Sorry to ramble, but having seen it happen in real life gives a greater appreciation of how important that little piece of plastic on a lanyard is.
ps. my boater was a guy from Carthage, TN. He was really a pro in this situation – quick reaction speed, great driving, had a ladder on his boat and used the braid trick to pop the treble hooks out of the one guy. He also finished 7th in the tournament!
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