National Fisherman

Boats & Gear 

Michael CrowleyThe Boats & Gear blog is overseen by our Boats & Gear editor, Michael Crowley. It explores new construction projects, electronics, gear and equipment for the commercial fishing industry.

If your survival equipment includes either Mustang’s MD2010 or MD2012 inflatable personal flotation devices sold in 2011, you want to get it to a Mustang Survival factory ASAP.

Those two models — and only those two PFD models — are being recalled to correct a defect with the inflator mechanism that might prevent the PFD from fully inflating with CO2. Oral inflation will still work.

Call Mustang Survival’s customer service department at (800) 526-0532 between 7:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Pacific. Mustang will pay for the repairs and shipping.

Orion Safety Products is recalling two models of hand-launched aerial signals. Both the hand-launched Orion XLT and the pistol-style launched 12-gauge signals of orange ABS plastic might fail to launch or ignite.

If you have an XLT signal with an orange launch tube with an expiration date between November and December 2011 or an orange 12-gauge shell with an expiration date between November 2011 and March 2012, you can receive a free four-pack replacement.

Handy information like these recall notices are in the Alaska Marine Safety Education Association’s winter newsletter, which you can read by going to

AMSEA’s newsletter has stuff in it for fishermen who work waters other than the Bering Sea and Gulf of Alaska.

The same newsletter has an article on avoiding whale collisions and a highly informative piece called “Tips for Quickly Donning an Immersion Suit.”

The latter article is based on the training sessions AMSEA has given thousands of fishermen and listening to survivors’ stories.

Did you know that about 30 percent of the people donning an immersion suit struggle to get into it because the zipper toggle is inside the suit instead of outside it? And leaning forward while trying to zip up a suit makes things more difficult.

It’s a good read. Check it out.

Inside the Industry

NMFS has awarded 16 grants totaling more than $2.5 million as part of its Bycatch Reduction Engineering Program.

The program supports the development of technological solutions and changes in fishing practices designed to minimize bycatch and aims to to find creative approaches and strategies for reducing bycatch, seabird interactions, and post-release mortality in federally managed fisheries.


Abe Williams, who was elected to the Bristol Bay Regional Seafood Development Association board last spring, has been selected as the new president as of September.

Williams fishes the F/V Crimson Fury, and is president of Nuna Resources, a nonprofit that supports sustainable resource development in rural Alaska, including fighting for an international solution to issues raised by the proposed Pebble Mine project.

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