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PFD cannisters? #120885
02/14/2017 10:43 AM
02/14/2017 10:43 AM
Joined: Sep 2016
Posts: 14
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cobradvm Offline OP
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cobradvm  Offline OP
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Joined: Sep 2016
Posts: 14
Hi - I'm trying to figure out if I should bring my PFD - it has a compressed gas canister which I can't bring with me on my flight obviously. Is it easy enough to get a replacement in the BVIs or should I just make do with what is on the boat we've chartered?

Thanks - sorry for all the noob questions!

Howard.

BVI Sponsors
Re: PFD cannisters? [Re: cobradvm] #120886
02/14/2017 10:56 AM
02/14/2017 10:56 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 5,692
GA/NC
GeorgeC1 Online content
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GeorgeC1  Online Content
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Posts: 5,692
GA/NC
You can legally check it with the co2 cartridges. I doubt you will wear it in the BVI so I would not bother unless you are a non swimmer.
G

Re: PFD cannisters? [Re: GeorgeC1] #120887
02/14/2017 11:34 AM
02/14/2017 11:34 AM
Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 2,034
Charlotte, NC
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NCSailor Offline
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NCSailor  Offline
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Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 2,034
Charlotte, NC
We bring fanny pack manual inflatable PFDs. They are used primarily at night in the dinghy. Small enough that they go into the shore bag once we get ashore.

Re: PFD cannisters? [Re: GeorgeC1] #120888
02/14/2017 11:45 AM
02/14/2017 11:45 AM
Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 1,661
St. John, USVI
RickG Offline
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RickG  Offline
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Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 1,661
St. John, USVI
Check with your airline on the CO2 sylinder - United yes, AA no. We have inflatable PFDs with harness on our boat for open water passage like STT to STM. I've never worn an inflatable PFD for coastal cruising around the Virgins. I would just go with what the charter company provides.

If you really want your personal PFD why not just ship it?

Cheers, RickG


S/V Echoes, 2003 Benetau 423
St. John, USVI
Re: PFD cannisters? [Re: RickG] #120889
02/14/2017 12:16 PM
02/14/2017 12:16 PM
Joined: Sep 2010
Posts: 5,613
Massachusetts
maytrix Offline
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maytrix  Offline
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Joined: Sep 2010
Posts: 5,613
Massachusetts
We flew JetBlue to St. Lucia with 2 vests and 5 cartridges. Bring a copy of the TSA paperwork. We did it all carry on. They did question it but I showed them the paper work and we were fine.

I believe it says 2 in the vest and 2 spares and 1 vest per person.

I'm not sure why you think its obvious you can't bring it on the plane - you do realize there's one under every seat, right? <img src="http://www.traveltalkonline.com/forums/images/graemlins/Wink.gif" alt="" />


Matt
Re: PFD cannisters? [Re: cobradvm] #120890
02/14/2017 12:19 PM
02/14/2017 12:19 PM
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 154
Eastern MA
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tothedogs Offline
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tothedogs  Offline
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Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 154
Eastern MA
We had issues trying to find a canister on STT this past summer on a charter for a crew member that is a non-swimmer. We were able to find a local supplier (the second one we tried) who theoretically had the one we needed. As they were going to the area of the charter company, they kindly dropped it off there for us. The ones that arrived had the incorrect thread and were not usable. If starting on Tortola, I would suggest checking with local suppliers to see if they have the one that you need and arranging pickup or delivery.

We try to eliminate checked baggage so checking it was not an option, though according to AA at the time, acceptance of the canister in checked baggage was on a case by case basis. Similarly, UPS rules I recall were ambiguous for shipping in advance.

The other option (costly) if necessary is to buy one on island.

Re: PFD cannisters? [Re: tothedogs] #120891
02/14/2017 12:55 PM
02/14/2017 12:55 PM
Joined: Sep 2010
Posts: 5,613
Massachusetts
maytrix Offline
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maytrix  Offline
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Joined: Sep 2010
Posts: 5,613
Massachusetts
FYI - Here's the link to the TSA rules - just print this and bring it with you. I'd keep them in carry on bags. But you can check them too.

http://apps.tsa.dhs.gov/mytsa/cib_results.aspx?search=CO2%20cartridge%20for%20life%20vest


Matt
Re: PFD cannisters? [Re: maytrix] #120892
02/14/2017 01:37 PM
02/14/2017 01:37 PM
Joined: Aug 2016
Posts: 6
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malandterv Offline
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malandterv  Offline
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Joined: Aug 2016
Posts: 6
Quote
maytrix said:
We flew JetBlue to St. Lucia with 2 vests and 5 cartridges. Bring a copy of the TSA paperwork. We did it all carry on. They did question it but I showed them the paper work and we were fine.

I believe it says 2 in the vest and 2 spares and 1 vest per person.

I'm not sure why you think its obvious you can't bring it on the plane - you do realize there's one under every seat, right? <img src="http://www.traveltalkonline.com/forums/images/graemlins/Wink.gif" alt="" />


Btw, while TSA allow two installed CO2 cylinders plus two spares, airlines are allowed to further restrict carriage of just about anything they like. JetBlue actually do in this case, and strictly prohibit PFD CO2 cartridges in both checked and carryon baggage even though it defies common sense as you pointed out. It doesn't really matter unless they find out (can't imagine how they would) but if they somehow did, they have cause to kick you off the flight. I fly with laminated copies of the TSA and airline policies but in the case of JetBlue, the former isn't going to help any.

American and United allow CO2 cartridges in checked baggage only. Delta, Norwegian, Alaska allow them in carryon baggage. Cape Air allow them...not certain about Seaborn but imagine they probably do as well.

Agree with others that flying with them is preferable to trying to find the correct rearming kit/cylinder, particularly for brands like Crewsaver, Spinlock, Kru, etc. which are nearly impossible to find.

You can't easily ship CO2 cartridges to the islands either, as they are considered hazardous materials.

Re: PFD cannisters? [Re: malandterv] #120893
02/14/2017 02:10 PM
02/14/2017 02:10 PM
Joined: Sep 2010
Posts: 5,613
Massachusetts
maytrix Offline
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maytrix  Offline
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Posts: 5,613
Massachusetts
JetBlue does allow them.

JetBlue CO2 Info

Last edited by maytrix; 02/14/2017 02:12 PM.
Re: PFD cannisters? [Re: maytrix] #120894
02/14/2017 04:00 PM
02/14/2017 04:00 PM
Joined: Aug 2016
Posts: 6
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malandterv Offline
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malandterv  Offline
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Posts: 6
Quote
maytrix said:
JetBlue does allow them.

JetBlue CO2 Info


I'll be damned - good to know and appreciate the correction! I couldn't figure out their policy a few months back as we had a group traveling to STT with one person looking at JetBlue and they couldn't figure it out, either. I called customer service and was told after consulting with a supervisor that they don't allow PFD cartridges in either checked or carryon. JetBlue doesn't spell out the exception on either permitted/prohibited baggage policies for whatever reason.

Still not sure how airlines would even be able to enforce additional restrictions beyond TSA's exemptions - it's not as though they are rifling through bags after the security checkpoint.

Re: PFD cannisters? [Re: malandterv] #120895
02/14/2017 04:06 PM
02/14/2017 04:06 PM
Joined: Sep 2010
Posts: 5,613
Massachusetts
maytrix Offline
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maytrix  Offline
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Joined: Sep 2010
Posts: 5,613
Massachusetts
Yes, I don't think I'd bother to look at an airlines policy since they aren't going to check your carry on.


Matt
Re: PFD cannisters? [Re: maytrix] #120896
02/14/2017 05:04 PM
02/14/2017 05:04 PM
Joined: Jun 2011
Posts: 3,193
VIRGINIA
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BEERMAN Offline
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BEERMAN  Offline
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VIRGINIA
When we flew to St Lucia to meet Matt we put our PFD's in the carry on and I had the canisters removed but loose in the vest. Two TSA screeners looked at my wifes vest and quickly said "nope", one didn't seem to know what the vest was. I politely asked to see a supervisor because I wanted them to read the TSA policy I had brought with us. The supervisor was also pretty quick to start shaking her head no, but once she read the policy she said "per this they are good!" They see a lot of questionable items I'm sure, the printout might help them remember some obscure memo they read regarding "Auto-PFD's"

More importantly, we dropped one of the canisters at TSA and didn't realize the ring had cracked and it wouldn't work once on St Lucia. Luckily Matt had a spare. Take a spare with you! <img src="http://www.traveltalkonline.com/forums/images/graemlins/toast.gif" alt="" />

Re: PFD cannisters? [Re: BEERMAN] #120897
02/16/2017 01:38 AM
02/16/2017 01:38 AM
Joined: Feb 2014
Posts: 80
Seattle, WA
mattt Offline
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mattt  Offline
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Posts: 80
Seattle, WA
We carried them once and removed the cartridges from the PFDs but after we didn't once use them the whole trip we stopped taking them. For safety we keep the throwable on deck and have never needed it.

Re: PFD cannisters? [Re: mattt] #120898
02/16/2017 10:05 PM
02/16/2017 10:05 PM
Joined: Nov 2003
Posts: 1,328
New Jersey, USA
DanS Offline
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DanS  Offline
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Posts: 1,328
New Jersey, USA
We've carried PFDs with CO2 cartridges on many trips, most recently a few weeks ago when we packed them in our carry-on bags. I vaguely remember one time years ago an agent raised questions about them, but ultimately let them through.

By the way, we bring belt-pack style PFDs, and do indeed wear them when we leave the security of the cockpit and go up on deck. I believe that many people who think of themselves as swimmers would expend a lot of energy staying afloat and might be in serious trouble if it took a while to maneuver the boat back and get them aboard. I'd rather not find out.

Dan <img src="http://www.traveltalkonline.com/forums/images/graemlins/Cheers.gif" alt="" />

Re: PFD cannisters? [Re: malandterv] #120899
02/17/2017 09:20 AM
02/17/2017 09:20 AM
Joined: Jan 2016
Posts: 48
NYC
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stephenr Offline
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stephenr  Offline
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Joined: Jan 2016
Posts: 48
NYC
I just returned from BVI and brought 2 inflatable pfds with 1 spare cartridge per. I flew JB. TSA questioned the CO2 cartridges both ways but allowed them after they brought a supervisor over. JB never questioned it though I did check with JB prior on a previous flight to Miami and no problem.


Steve
Re: PFD cannisters? [Re: DanS] #120900
02/17/2017 10:43 AM
02/17/2017 10:43 AM
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 1,049
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StormJib Offline
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StormJib  Offline
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Quote
DanS said:
We've carried PFDs with CO2 cartridges on many trips, most recently a few weeks ago when we packed them in our carry-on bags. I vaguely remember one time years ago an agent raised questions about them, but ultimately let them through.

By the way, we bring belt-pack style PFDs, and do indeed wear them when we leave the security of the cockpit and go up on deck. I believe that many people who think of themselves as swimmers would expend a lot of energy staying afloat and might be in serious trouble if it took a while to maneuver the boat back and get them aboard. I'd rather not find out.

Dan <img src="http://www.traveltalkonline.com/forums/images/graemlins/Cheers.gif" alt="" />


We attempt to get everyone to take their own swim test. Jump over the side and swim a complete 360 around the boat then without touching anything then swim to the best place to climb back on the boat and get themselves aboard without assistance. Many "good" swimmers learn something about themselves with this exercise.

When it comes to minors until they can demonstrate the 360 swim and self return to the boat. The child must have a PFD on whenever they are on deck. You must be able to demonstrate if you fall overboard the complete competence to get yourself back on this boat.

If anyone ends up overboard when the boat is underway. The person will certainly wish they have something to help float and increase their visibility.

One good practice drill is for the primary skipper to initiate a man overboard drill shortly after leaving the dock on the first day or on the second morning at the latest. The primary skipper and helmsman should initiate the drill then observe seated out of the way in silence as if he or she was the one in the water.

We throw a fender over and retrieve the fender with a boat hook on the first day shortly after leaving the harbor. Everyone should now their roles and positions if the skipper ever ends up in the water.

Last edited by StormJib; 02/17/2017 11:00 AM.

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