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Cornish Fishing Crews Could be Forced to Wear Lifejackets

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Published by the Pirate FM News Team at 7:00am 11th January 2013.

Pirate FM has been told Cornish fishermen could be forced to wear lifejackets.

A report into the death of a Mevagissey man is suggesting it may have to be made compulsory.

The Marine Accident Investigation Branch says Ian Thomas might have survived had he worn one in Gerrans Bay the night he drowned.

Dave Bond fishes from Looe. He said: "It's pretty much an insult to the intelligence of most fishermen to turn round and legislate that they've got to wear them. When you're in a job, a highly dangerous job, then you've got to be aware of your responsibilities. You value your life."

He says it would be impossible to enforce: "Why you've got to be told by men in offices all the time that 'you've got to do this, you've got to do that' who haven't got a clue what goes on out there, is beyond me."

South East Cornwall MP Sheryll Murray is backing the calls. She said advances mean that they no longer get in the way: "Some of them are really tiny now so they don't actually impinge on the fishermen's working practices or their agility around the boat. So my message is please, please, please make sure that you source it.

"We have to now look at developing a lifejacket that these fishermen can feel comfortable wearing, that they can wear safely so that there aren't the toggles and things on the lifejackets that can get caught on the gear before we make it mandatory."

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