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Ocean Fishing Safety: Why You Need a Ditch Bag & What to Pack

Offshore saltwater fishing is a renowned style of angling pursuit in the coastal United States and it’s easy to see the appeal. Access to remote fishing grounds, a test of skill and the thrill of reeling in large, powerful game fish. But with reward, comes risk.

Responsible boaters understand that ocean fishing safety is always priority one, especially when venturing offshore. Boat captains are responsible for outfitting their vessel with an array of offshore fishing safety gear and procedures. One critical item that all boaters should include on their ocean fishing safety checklist is a ditch bag.

How to pack a ditch bag ocean fishing safety

A ditch bag is a compact, buoyant bag that is stocked with critical ocean fishing safety gear that you might need in an emergency. If you had to abandon ship, the items in your ditch bag would enable you to summon help and survive in a life raft. It should be stored in a secure, accessible place on your vessel so that it can be grabbed quickly in an emergency. Here are some key items to include when packing your ditch bag.

WAYS TO SUMMON HELP

●    EPIRB or Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon
●    PLB or Personal Locator Beacon
●    Handheld VHF Radio
●    Handheld GPS
●    Satellite Phone
●    Cell Phone in Waterproof Case
●    Solar Charger
●    Distress or Strobe Light
●    Handheld and Laser Flares
●    Dye Marker
●    Gloves
●    Signaling Mirror
●    Flashlight
●    Air Horn
●    Whistle
●    Extra Batteries

SURVIVAL GEAR & TOOLS

●    Flotation Device
●    Folding Knife
●    Knife Sharpener
●    Cutting Board
●    Tarp
●    Paracord
●    Space Blankets
●    Compass
●    Waterproof Charts
●    Light Sticks
●    Binoculars
●    Flotation Device
●    Life Vest Rearming Kit
●    Raft Repair Kit
●    Compact Fishing Kit
●    Sunscreen & Hats
●    Sunglasses
●    Mug
●    Duct Tape
●    Fire Starter
●    Shears

NUTRITION & HYDRATION

●    Emergency Food Rations
●    Drinking Water Packets
●    Protein Bars
●    Peanut Butter
●    Trail Mix

MEDICAL NECESSITIES

●    Extensive First Aid Kit
●    Prescriptions
●    Motion Sickness Treatment
●    Vitamin C Tablets
●    Chapstick
●    Disinfecting Wipes

Continue reading, “Ocean Fishing Safety: Why You Need a Ditch Bag & What to Pack” here.

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