What Does PFD Mean to You and Your Family’s Safety?

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Expert and experienced kayakers know what does PFD mean to their safety. That’s why they make sure that they always wear it whenever they go aboard a kayak.

PFD stands for personal floatation device. It is popularly known as a life vest or life jacket. A personal floatation device provides additional buoyancy to those who wear it.

Several states in America are already requiring kayakers and boaters to own a personal floatation device even if the practice of this law varies from one state to another. It is also important to make sure that the PFD people purchase is U.S. Coast Guard approved.

Why Do You Need to Wear a Personal Floatation Device?

There are people who take for granted what does PFD mean for their security. Some people may think that owning a personal floatation device is just for marketing purposes or is just non-sense. Some people make excuses for not wearing a life vest when they hop into their boat.

They might think that they don’t need one because they are good swimmers. They might assume that it is useless to wear a life vest in a small body of water. Some might think that they are just going to wear it when they are already in danger.

However, even if you’re the best swimmer in the world, what does PFD mean to your life and safety is huge. You will never know when accidents may happen. You can’t predict when the forces of nature can work against you. You are not invincible to fight the strong currents, huge waves, and even cramps.

Additionally, most drowning incidents happen in small bodies of water. The majority of these drownings occur close to the safe area or in boats that are below 20 ft. in length. These incidents occur because of unexpected circumstances like medical emergencies and weather changes.

In fact, the drowning incidents that are related to boating is 70 percent, and 85 percent of those who drowned were not wearing a personal floatation device. Safety and preparation for inevitable changes in nature is what does PDF mean for kayakers and boaters.

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How to Choose the Right Personal Floatation Device

  • Find the Right Size

In addition to knowing what does PFD mean, it is important to find the right size for you. When you are an adult, your size will determine the PFD that will fit you. For children, the weight will determine the right PFD size for them.

In addition to that, there’s a personal floatation device that is specifically designed for women. It is recommended that women should wear this PFD instead of the unisex type because this will allow them to move more comfortably. Furthermore, this PFD has a wider bust area, and the contours are specially designed for women.

The sizes of PFD vary in different models and brands. Each has a different foam placement to follow the contours of different body types.

Safety is what does PFD mean, but it is important to remember to choose the one that is comfortable and lets you move freely.  Also, remember that a PFD with several straps lets you customize and fit the g device perfectly on your body.

If you’re going to use it for paddling, it is recommended to try it on with your padding clothes to see if you can move comfortably.

  • Choose the Right Type

You might think that just knowing what does PFD mean and owning one is what is important. However, you must be aware that there are a few types of PFD. Knowing the different types can help you choose which PFD will let you move comfortably in a particular activity that you do.

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  1. Standard Type I Offshore Lifejacket

This PFD is designed more for security than comfort. This is the best PFD to use if it will take a little while before the rescue arrives. Even an unconscious person can stay floating in the water while wearing this vest. The downside of this lifejacket is its bulky size.

  1. Type II Near-Shore Lifejacket

This lifejacket is designed to be used for small bodies of water. It can save some unconscious people but not all of them. It is also bulky in size but smaller than the type I.

  1. Type II Floatation Aid

This PFD is the most comfortable to wear. It is the popular PFD for recreational boaters and fishers. However, this PDF is designed to be used in open and calm water where the rescue is expected to arrive fast. It can save unconscious people. However, this PFD is not capable of turning the wearer face up.

  1. Type IV Throwable Floatation Device

This floatation device is only effective for conscious people. This type of PFD is meant to be thrown to a casualty who is not wearing a PFD. Examples of this type are the lire ring and buoyant cushion.

  1. Type V Special Devices

This type of PFD is designed for specific activities. The wearer should read the label and follow the instructions on how to use these kinds of PFD. Its label should provide information such as its performance type and the kinds of activities where it is intended.

Don’t Forget a PFD for Your Pet

If you don’t want to go to the sea alone, you might sometimes take your pet with you. Nowadays, life vests for pets are already available. Do not think that your dog is a great swimmer so it won't need it. Dogs get tired too, so they need a PFD as well. What does PFD mean to you is also the same for your dog.