Liferaft is approved

After many back and forth emails on the subject, the organizers have finally ruled that Med Viking’s current liferaft (a MD-2 by Switlik) is approved for the race. Here is the email I received:

Hello Bernard;

 I think I finally have an answer for you about your life raft. It took several calls to different certification and service providers, but I think we are at a place that helps you and the Pacific Cup Technical and Inspection groups.

 Life rafts are certified to meet manufacturer’s specifications, not offshore racing rules. When a raft is sent in for certification, it is the responsibility of the skipper/owner to ask that the raft be certified against USS/ISAF rules in addition to manufacturer’s specifications.

 Your raft, the Switlik MD-2, Mk-II does not meet ISAF regulations because it does not have an insulated floor. However, two of the certifying companies I talked with stated, without being asked, that IF your ditch bag contains inflatable backpacking-style mattresses (Thermorest-type or closed cell foam pads – sufficient to cover about 80 – 90% of the floor surface), your raft can be considered to comply with the rule. USS and ISAF do not have any guidance in this area at this time, so this is what I would use during an inspection.

 So, you will need these in your ditch pack at inspection time, and be prepared to show them upon request in Kaneohe. If you have any questions about how to comply with the rule, using this method. Please feel free to give me a call and I can provide some guidance, and share the final resolution with Sylvia and Rowena.

 Hope this helps resolve our problem, but if not, please let me know.

Tony English


This is good news because a new liferaft is about $6,000…

The crew will also be happy to know that if we ever need to use the liferaft, we will have the comfort of an inflatable mattress!

Med Viking's raft

Med Viking’s raft

New fire extinguishers

The race requires each boat to have at least 2 fire extinguishers with at least 2 kg (4.40 lbs) of dry powder. Med Viking currently has 3 fire extinguishers but they are the smaller marine type:

Current one (2.5 lbs of agent)

Current one (2.5 lbs of agent)

Fire extinguishers are hard to buy online because they are pressurized items and heavy. The good news is that Home Depot has the required models in the 5 lbs class:

Kidde 340

Kidde 340  (5 lbs of agent)

These fire extinguishers are even Coast Guard approved if they are installed with the right mounting brackets. So after a tour on Amazon, I ordered two brackets:

Coast Guard approved bracket

Coast Guard approved bracket

I also started to draw a location map of different equipment and I started with the fire extinguishers:

Location map

Location map