The Coast Guard will be conducting safety spot checks, voluntary dockside exams, and offering basic safety training in various Northwest ports from November 26-28, 2007 as part of “Operation Safe Crab.”
Coast Guard examiners will be checking that vessels have all the proper safety equipment on board and that proper pot loading practices are being followed. As part of the equipment check they will be looking at survival suits, EPIRBS, and life rafts, to make sure they are ready for use should an emergency at sea occur. Past checks have found that 25% to35% of EPIRBS and life rafts are installed improperly. If any deficiencies are found during these checks the vessel may be restricted from operating until they are corrected.
The ultimate goal of “Operation Safe Crab” is to reduce the number of lives lost at sea. Commercial Dungeness crabbing vessels have the highest fatality rate of any West Coast fishery.