British Float Tube Association
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Author Topic: Risk Assessment for the BFTA  (Read 990 times)
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« on: August 03, 2013, 12:35:32 PM »



The following document attempts to encompass those risks which are usually considered to be of concern when undertaking the activity of float tubing.

The list of risks is not exhaustive – no document of this kind could ever hope to achieve that ethereal level. However, for instance - the likelihood of being hit by crashing aeroplane, or dying through after effects of an insect bite in the UK are so unlikely as to be totally negligible hazards. Any glaring concerns for safety risks will be added to this document when they become known and necessary. This therefore should be considered as a working document to be revised if needed.

Float tubing, (despite perhaps its appearance to the uninitiated), is an inherently safe activity. It could be argued with some conviction, that those taking part are at less risk than most bank anglers. All sensible float tubers wear lifejackets, (a requirement for BFTA members), when near or on the water. The float tube itself is a substantial buoyancy device, fitted with a number of separate bladders to ensure that it would float, even if a serious accident should occur to damage its integrity.

In spite of its rapidly growing popularity, there has not been a recorded serious accident involving float tubing for a period of at least 20 years in the United Kingdom. (And none are known previous to this period). The development of float tubing equipment over this time, has resulted in a considerable improvement and variety in the design, and has featured the inclusion of built in safety features where possible. This has partially been due to most of the float tube development taking place in the USA, where litigation is rife.

Under no circumstances should a member attempt to stand up in, or leave the seat and turn around in a float tube when it is afloat.

The most commonly encountered problem in a float tube, is that of a slow air leak, usually as a result of a fly piercing the case and bladder in very windy conditions. In our extensive experience, this has never caused much of a problem to the float tube fisherman, who merely makes for the nearest shore to repair the leak. At worst, it means a walk back to the car carrying his equipment. Even this event is very, very rare!

Today there are probably several thousand float tubers in the UK, of whom we at the BFTA, represent a core group of very interested and enthusiastic participants. We aim to actively help promote safe float tubing all over the UK, and are constantly successfully working with Water Authorities, together with other interested bodies, to develop safe participation, and to extend the opportunities available to our members. We are always ready to assist where required.

« Last Edit: May 20, 2014, 09:02:43 PM by bracken » Logged
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