This new “man-overboard” device is one of the best safety products that we have seen in a long while. If a boat loses someone overboard there are a variety of signaling and retrieving systems available, each with distinct advantages and disadvantages. The SOS Dan Buoy from Australia is a real improvement over any existing product in how it works. When stored, it is a compact package about half the size of a typical briefcase and it weighs only about six lbs. It can be stored nearby inside the cockpit or the main outside helm. When needed, it requires only a quick toss overboard, as close as possible to the person lost overboard, and it does the rest.

Its trigger mechanism self-inflates and starts the top-mounted SOLAS-quality light. Fully inflated, the safety orange column extends above water a full two meters and can be seen for a great distance (it was tested to show at 1,700 meters distance!). A large safety-orange drogue deploys to aid spotting from the air. The person overboard can insert arms into the heavy nylon straps and this will help keep them afloat if they lose strength due to hypothermia. The integrated light will assist recovery, especially in the dark.

This is an impressive addition to onboard safety equipment.

Check out their product specs as well as the video at