Kill Cords, not People
A ‘kill cord’ is an engine cut-out device that when used properly will save an accident from becoming a medical emergency. A kill cord secured to the wrist of the skipper will switch off the motor of your boat should the skipper fall overboard or into the boat and be rendered unable to maintain control of the boat.
A kill cord is, as the name suggests, a cord or plastic cable that is connected to a ‘kill switch’ on the console of a boat. In simple terms, this simple piece of kit uses a spring-loaded button or toggle switch to cut the boats motor, once the kill cable is tugged the circuit is broken and the motor will stop.
Boaters who are new to the sport or are unaware are advised to buy and operate a kill cord without delay, accidents do happen in an instant. For information check out your local boat suppliers at the Marina or talk with your buddies at the sailing club for experienced input.
As with all safety devices kill cords are only as good as the way you use them – or not! Used correctly they are a very sensible precaution.Kill cord maintenance includes checking that your kill cord actually does stop the motor when used, sounds silly? It would be far worse if when needed it did not function as expected.
Make sure the kill cord is in good condition. Attach the kill cord to the skipper/driver before the motor is started where possible, and if the motor is already started before putting it into gear.
Stop the motor when transferring to another person/driver.Try not to get into a situation where you need to use the kill cord.
Check out the laws/rules of use locally in case using a kill cord is mandatory, always obey the local and National rules.
Boating and all aspects of sailing and water-based sports are meant to be exciting fun. Always respect and bear in mind the needs of the other people using the same water as you. Scuba divers, slow moving water craft etc must be kept safe, as must you and your own passengers. Drive Responsibly and enjoy.