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List of Supporters


15 clubs signed up.

Club Date Comments
Montclair High School USA 13/10/2008 22:30:19 I'm so glad that I found this site. I remember that terrible accident, but put it to the back of my mind. I am now coaching abroad, high school kids. I am going to go through every safety aspect of the team and fleet this week. Regards and support 
Medway Towns Rowing Club 14/05/2008 11:23:55 Excellent Site with invaluable information. 
None 04/05/2008 08:04:51 Thank you for a very informative site

Ardingly Rowing Club 21/12/2007 11:59:31 Mens coach , Mostyn Field. What a silly comment from Cerberus who I notice prefers to stay anonymous. Having rowed and coached on the tideway for 30 years I was pretty gung-ho on safety matters. Your website and campaign has made me think about these important issues. As a result I'm sure my sessions, now run on an isoloted lake (that sometimes freezes in parts, are much safer for all involved 
Cerberus 10/11/2007 18:50:57 I am the safety officer for one of the Tideway clubs who used to row for an Oxford College. I cannot believe how you have turned this into such a crusade - you are not the only people who have lost family to or accidents - most normal people manage to get over it without the need to inflcit their own guilt and self-importance on the behaviour of others through public campaigning.  
Pembroke College Oxford 18/06/2006 18:21:56 Pembroke College stands behind the Blockleys and their campaign for bouyancy regulations in the sport - and is phasing out the minority of its fleet that do not have inherrent bouyancy. 
Downing College Boat Club 10/10/2005 12:08:28 Having heard the news about the reopening of the inquest and the new verdict, it seems even more important that regulations about boat bouyancy are laid down. If the people in the position of making decisions affecting others' safety can not be trusted to act in the right way, or expected to foresee freak events, then the contingency of boat bouyancy should be present 100% of the time.

DCBC send our best wishes to the Blockleys and hope that the verdict on 7th October 2005 can help strengthen the Campaign. 
Hampton Roads Rowing Club 04/04/2005 22:38:46 It's important that we all learn from this tragedy and needless loss of life. 
Portsmouth Grammar School RC 26/09/2002 11:27:57 Coached both Caroline and Leo in the November prior to the accident (OULRC) and am glad that something positive has emerged from the tragedy. Have moved PGSRC to a sheltered location (it was coastal rowing) and, in addition to other safety measures, all rowers/coxes at present wear 50N buoyancy aids... 
Lincoln College Boat Club 30/04/2002 10:48:09   
University College London BC 27/04/2002 14:22:18 It's frightening to think what can happen when there is no in-boat buoyancy. Safety is something we have taken for granted until hearing about Leo's death. We row on the Tideway where I've seen the weather turn in a moment. We have Janoueks which is a comfort but there are hundreds of crews each weekend who could be taking a risk without knowing it. \r\n Good luck with your campaign. It's so sad that it's taken grief to make something so simple as sealed compartments an important issue for safety and that the ARA are so reluctant to put their foot down.\r\nemail torps@blondie.co.uk or webmaster@uclbc.co.uk 
Thames Tradesmen's RC 25/04/2002 13:51:22 TTRC has had a long-standing policy of buying Janousek and, more recently, Stampfli boats. These brands consistently manufacture boats at FISA minimum weight and include fully enclosed under-seat bouyancy compartments and come at no price premium compared to their competitors. There is no excuse for other manufacturers not to be able to do this, nor for the ARA not to recommend it. 
Georgia Tech Crew 25/04/2002 04:05:21 coach.slim@gtcrew.com 
Worcester College Boat Club (Oxford) 10/04/2002 18:49:58 When conditions rapidly deteriorated at this year's cancelled WeHORR, It was comforting to know that our new Women's boat (a Stampfli) has a sensible level of in-built buoyancy. There is no sound argument against such a simple and potentially life-saving feature and we would hope that all new boats be built with this in mind. 
Pembroke College Boat Club (Cambridge) 20/03/2002 14:57:45 We're mostly a Janousek club anyway, and support anything that will make rowing safer! 


150 individuals signed up.

Name Club Date Comments
Freya Morgan (Lodge) ex-Downing College, Imperial Medics, Sons of Thames Boatclubs  15/11/2010 15:16:26 Having had some hairy moments myself, I would fully support this campaign.  
Francis Brown Quintin Boat Club  22/02/2009 13:17:05 1. The ARA supported safety jacket is impractical and gets in the way of a sculling finish.
2. Night rowing on the tidal Thames, even with lights, is an accident waiting to happen. 
Rower and Coach rowing club  13/02/2009 10:33:22 I have seen you flyer to clubs and have some questions, I am sure you can point me to the direct answers.

1.You say "Is the ARA responsible for rowing safety?
Yes. It is obliged in law to set and enforce national
standards of practice and equipment safety." Where is this law, I'd like to see the wording.

2. You say "These standards should be the minimum
enforceable platform upon which clubs build their own
safety strategy." How do you propose these to be enforced?

3. What happened to personal responsibility, I receive guidance in many things eg How to cross a road safely, I then choose whether to follow that guidnace, is that not a very practical method of informing people of safety?

4. You use this example “Policy on wearing of PFDs for beginners and
juniors – set one and communicate and enforce.” Is this not prudent, all clubs circumstnaces are different, eg I would suggest junior (esp beginners or non swimmers) us bouyancy aids on the tideway at all times, however if they are on a lake, can swim and it is the middle of august with a safety boat on hand is this necessary, clubs have to make that decision themsleves as circumstances vary so much.

5. You say "The ARA has failed to set a firm basis of expertly
informed compulsory minimum safety standards.
Each club must now decide, unaided, whether to follow
the recommendations" having read Rowsafe and the RoSPA I think they ahve responded, Clubs ARE aided, they have RowSafe as a doc (plus other documents which you allude to, we have plenty of guidance!) We ahve to decide, based on our stretches of water, our members abilities, the time of year what is relevant to our clubs. The problem with "rules" is that something will happen that has not been acounted for, and the rules have a danger of making people complacent towards safety, not thinking about it but taking it for granted, this would make any water sort even more dangerous, guidance not rules makes people think "What does our club need, what is relevant in our situation" not "I'm following all the rules, I don't need to think about safety" (my quotes).

To conclude, I basically agree with the initial aim of this campaogn, namely flotation as standard in all boats (it is simple to do for new baots, I have an issue with "retro-fit" but that is another discussion).

However you seem to have strayed from this sensible and supportable proposal and I agree a little witht he sentiment of "Cerberus" even if his wording is a little blunt. This does seem to be a vendetta, and you appear, to me at least, to have lost sight of the initial well thought out single issue of boat flotation.

I hope you can answer my questions, and possibly get back to you original quest, which I would fully support.

I have you will see remained anonymous as I do not wish to be on the end of a "campaign" or vendetta from either yorselves or any of Leo's crew. 
Adam Drake Ex DCBC  02/07/2008 19:28:23 I'm shocked that so many years on so little has been done. 
Andrew Cross no longer!!  04/06/2008 19:48:46 Very good call. You can't expect tired crew to swim long in cold water when tired, and as lifejackets are not practical, boats with enough positive bouyancy to keep the crew far enough above the waterline to delay hypothermia must be compulsory. 
Bob Cannell Bradford ARC  27/02/2008 12:18:18 I am the CWSA for BARC. Have just ordered another 20 buoyancy bags from ES Racing Services (ex Eton Boats) the only supplier I know. They say a lot of clubs are currently ordering bags (after HORR 2007 I'm not surprised.) We have two older eights (and a new floating one)and can't afford to replace them for a long time so we need retrofit buoyancy. We've been using bags for several years and they are a nuisance, get lost, get broken, take too much time and get forgotten (sometimes 'on purpose' i think). It's quite a job persuading older rowers to use them. We really need a proper retrofit underseat solution that is 'fit and forget', leaves some room for splashtop and flipflops and works (I don't know if 16 of these bags are 'sufficient'. Have they been tested in real conditions?).
Any suggestions?
Ryan Lindstrom Cerberus Boat Club  28/01/2008 17:50:46 Please note that there is a Cerberus Boat Club (ex Oxford) comment below wasn't us. Is there another Cerberus that has such poor form? Our club has long term links with the light weight rowing squad and strongly supports the Blockley campaign.  
Bernard Kauffmann CNHM - France  29/11/2007 13:28:35 as a rower I never understood why we do not have boats safe in every circumstance and why our rowing associations do not push on that vital subject. Thanks for your efforts and usefull guidelines. 
Paul Morgado N/A  17/07/2007 19:27:21 As a friend of the Blockley family, I support them in their attempt to make sure people learn from this tragedy. 
Jessica Foinette Ex Downing College Boat Club   09/01/2007 16:59:49
Sebastan Schnieder Ardingly RC / RC Hansa Dortmund (Germany)  13/12/2006 11:53:26  
Alice Motion St Hilda's College BC, Oxford  14/11/2006 00:25:46  
Sophie Brewer University College Boat Club, Durham  04/11/2006 20:37:37  
Anatole Beams Putney Town Rowing Club  23/09/2006 10:34:35 After experiencing the Vet's Head massacre in 2004, we know the limits of our Janousek's buoyancy. It provided essential and useful buoyancy, enabling us to row the boat to the side. However, we could not lift the shell to empty it as the compartments had largely filled after 10 minutes submerged. The hatch covers are not water-tight, even when the seals are good. Two of our crew suffered the effects of hypothermia and the rest of us were severely chilled. With an open shell, we would not have been so able to rescue ourselves. We had to wait 30 minutes, soaked on a submerging beach before we were towed back to Putney Embankment.

There is simply no excuse for manufacturing boats without buoyancy. 
James Knight Various  31/08/2006 14:18:48 Having survived a swamping on the Solent during a head race where our buoyant Jano survived but the boat next to us split in half I fully support this campaign. Buoyancy should apply to all boats irrespective of how likely swamping is deemed to be - you never know what is going to happen eg when the speedboat with the drunk driver is going come to wash you down or when upstream wind meets downstream torrent when lock gates open during you outing etc. People are generally far too complacent. Clubs need to make their boats buoyant, manufacturers need to stop making non-buoyant boats, the ARA needs to issue better guidelines and take the lead for the sake of its members.  
paul brant Sea rowing wales  21/08/2006 15:33:12 i fully support the move to improve rowing safety 
Hilary Lister Westbere Sailing Opportunities  16/06/2006 14:56:41 It is so easy to be swamped quickly at sea - one wave can easily sink a small boat. Let's hope that this verdict will lead to the rules on boat buoyancy being tightened for all of us who love the water. 
Christopher Kerr CULRC  14/06/2006 13:47:32 I'm not sure if anyone has mentioned this before, but extra buoyancy doesn't just make boats safer - it makes you faster if you have to race in adverse conditions. I personally have been swamped several times while racing (including National Schools 2005 and BUSA Head 2006), and this year's Boat Race surely gives publicity to the fact that a boat full of air goes faster than one full of water. Maybe this will help to persuade the reactionaries who don't see the point in water safety. 
Moira Maccallum ex TSS  14/06/2006 12:33:08 Safety is paramount - you should be fully supported. 
Joanna Dunn Christ Church, Oxford  12/06/2006 21:33:02  
Kathryn Smith Lea  15/02/2006 18:14:58 That this campaign is still needed is a travesty. Bouyant boats should have been mandatory many years ago. 
Carl-Friedrich Ratz Treptower Rudergemeinschaft e.V. Berlin/Germany  29/12/2005 09:50:22 Great campaign, is needed also in Germany  
Ken Hamilton BCU  21/12/2005 09:08:58 It is a greater tragedy that someone has to lose their life before governing bodies and authorities are forced to take what appears to them as unnecessary and inconvenient action regarding safety. I paddle and boat with my young son on the Thames and like many others take our safety for granted. I wish you success in your efforts on all our behalf.
Peter C P Halliday Hawthorn Rowing Club  18/11/2005 00:47:17 Everyone in our local rowing community and state governing body and relevant authorities that have spoken to me about the subject of rowing agree with having adequate, supportable and workable safety standards.

We are making available a capsize drill exercise for all rowing participants in our region. 
Alexander Lindsay Many, including Leander, OUBC, Bosporos, Army, Bradford on Avon, ...  15/10/2005 17:49:42 I am an experienced veteran oarsmen, who has been rowing since 1950 (Oxford, 1960 Olympics, Leander, etc).

I am also an enginering graduate who understands the physics.

I have been watching this discussion with interest for some years, largely by following on rec.sport.rowing. I am completely convinced of the need for inherent bouyancy in 4s and 8s, having swamped, or nearly so, on many occasions, including the Vesta Veterans Head in 2004.

Recent events have persuaded me to study the Blockley files. I have been dismayed by the shockingly dilatory and evasive attitude of the ARA. I wish I could think of a way of helping. Don't hesitate to ask.

Ben Whitehead Downing College Boat Club  10/10/2005 12:00:43 That there is any resistance to this campaign is beyond my ability to understand - the answer is simple and obvious - increase boat bouyancy. Even old boats can have bouyancy bags inserted under the seat cavities! 
alison blake n/a  07/10/2005 18:10:13 best of luck with this campaign 
Roxanne Selby N/a  16/08/2005 21:45:11 This is a great campaign - take the steps to keep others safe and prevent similar catastrophes. 
Ruth Stewart once Downing College BC  10/11/2004 12:49:32 It seems so straightforward - Either you guarantee all rowers are strong swimmers, or you ensure that the boat is buoyant for long enough for help to reach the crew. The first is difficult, the second is not.  
George Parsonage Glasgow Humane Society  26/10/2004 19:25:47 I am the lifeboat Officer for the River Clyde in Glasgow. I have followed your campaign and have pushed for support in my area since that sad day in Spain. This campaign is a tribute to all your family and fellow campaigners. 
Pete Cawston Ex-Downing College BC  20/10/2004 15:26:50 We can reduce a significant risk at very little cost. It makes no sense to ignore this. ARA, what are you doing? 
Toby Rogers Vesta  21/02/2003 18:03:01 I hear that the new ARA safety code is a little weak in area of boat buoyancy, using words like “sufficient” but with no specific qualification (indeed it is very difficult to get any specific wording of the new code. I am told by the ARA that the code will be published mid March, just too weeks before it comes into force!). Let me give the ARA a little help...Requirement: Ensure that the crew is not immersed in water in the event of swamping. Why? Just read the section on Hypothermia in the current code & this website! How: Ensure there is sufficient intact buoyancy in the flooded condition to ensure the crew is not immersed. “Sufficient” – We can qualify this exactly by specifying that the top of the crew’s seats must not below the waterline (or some other similar geometric criteria). This can be tested with simply with no specialist equipment and an official buoyancy certificate can be issued for each compliant boat. Each boat shall then display proof that they have passed such test; this can then be checked at regattas (much like bow balls and heel restraints are now). Incidentally our sailing colleagues, the RYA, have had a similar system in place for many, many years. So it’s not that difficult, and as an ex-Naval Architect who spent many years working for Lloyd’s Register of Shipping (an authority on ship and boat safety) I will willingly explain this to the ARA if they have difficulty grasping the issue. 
Al Maw ex-Catz (Cam)  17/02/2003 21:47:23 I only recently learned of this. How tragic. Come on, ARA! Make this better known-about! 
Jon Carpenter Downing College BC  15/02/2003 16:58:54 safety first 
Gareth Powell Queen's College BC (Oxford)  16/12/2002 16:27:03  
Christopher Francis Shea Cygnet RC  15/12/2002 19:19:17 It seems to me the attitude of the ARA is in danger of doing some serious damage to the sport. I hope they see the light and stop digging before it is too late. 
Anas El Turabi ex-OULRC  30/06/2002 13:37:56 For the safety of everyone one of us who might venture out or be caught up in rough conditions. For the memory of all of us who did. For Leo. 
Dan Singleton Bradford Grammar School BC  29/06/2002 14:51:17 Even with often limited funds we make a point of buying Janousek boats as we are well aware that safety must come first. This is especially so in school clubs were all members are younger and less able to cope if conditions become hazardous. I urge other school clubs to adopt a similar policy and support this campaign.

Ruth Whiting Osler-Green BC (Oxford)  29/05/2002 02:21:11 I agree wholeheartedly with this- why isn't built in buoyancy already standard? As a cox, being the only person in my crew with a life jacket, this issue has often crossed my mind. As one member of a small boat club there is not a lot I can do where it comes to buying boats, but you can be sure I have been vocal about this to those who matter, and you have my full support with your campaign. Well done for doing something in creating this site. ARA, FISA- no excuses. Let's have all new boats made buoyant, and an adequate means developed of making older boats safer. No more avoidable tragedies. 
Rhys Houghton-Jones Peterhouse  03/05/2002 20:43:03  
Paul Banham ex OULRC  02/05/2002 15:43:29   
Claire Green ex OUWBC  01/05/2002 14:52:29   
Sarah Livermore New College BC (Oxford)  01/05/2002 11:58:28 This is a great campaign and absolutely vital for ensuring that our sport is as safe as possible.
Very best of luck to all those involved in negotiations with the governing bodies.  
Seamus Keating Putney Town R C  30/04/2002 15:36:37 Take the precautions nescessary to keep our sport safe. 
Camilla Vasa OUWLRC  29/04/2002 18:21:48   
Lara Wood Weybridge LARC  28/04/2002 21:13:24 All rowers know we should not go out in bad conditions but weather conditions can change on an outing. If manufacturers can put extra buoyancy in boats then its worth the extra money if it will stop unnessary deaths.
Hopefully people will take notice of this campaign and things will get better, but why is it sometimes not until a tragic accident happens that people suddenly take notice.

Roger Slaymaker Southampton ARC  27/04/2002 13:26:02 I fully support this campaign. For the ARA as governing body to bury their heads in the sand and throw the responsibility back to the individual is a scandal. We have seat belts and other safety equipment for cars, additional bouancy for boats should be compulsory or at least promoted. 
James Anderton   27/04/2002 12:29:12   
Antonia van Deventer CCRC  27/04/2002 12:09:36 I feel sad that it has taken something as tragic as this to prompt discussions about safety and bouyancy. However, I hope that this petition will raise more awareness and prevent future accidents.
Ruth Jenkins Kingston Rowing Club, ex Robinson BC & CUWBC  27/04/2002 09:14:07   
Pete Forester Downing and CULRC  25/04/2002 13:28:48   
Edward Flach Lincoln  25/04/2002 11:50:22   
Toby Rogers Vesta RC  25/04/2002 10:40:38 Reading the article in today’s Telegraph, I am staggered by the ignorance (or arrogance?) of the ARA’s water safety committee who said “It is more important to make sure the conditions are suitable before an outing.” very good advice, but missing the point entirely! This is about the unexpected. Early one sunny morning last June I was out on the Tideway what were unbelievably perfect conditions. A large Thames pleasure boat, maybe a bit late for their first trip and pushing the speed limit, passed me near Hammersmith bridge. Two inches of green water surged over the canvas, filling up my scull to the brim in less than a second. Of course, like most sculling boats, it has sufficient buoyancy, and the incident (apart from my annoyance) was a non-incident. If I had been in one of our club’s Eton Racing 4’s or 8’s the crew would have been in the Thames. ARA - Wake Up! the choice is simple. 
Andy Knill Marlow  24/04/2002 18:36:04 As a safety advisor I fully support your campaign - but then again it is so obvious I fail to see how anybody couldn't do likewise. It is a shame that despite the logic, it is so difficult to achieve change. Good luck with the cause. 
Emily Eadington CUWBC  24/04/2002 12:21:23   
Rhiannon Turner Caius Boat Club  24/04/2002 10:28:10   
Annie Vernon Downing College BC and Castle Dore RC  23/04/2002 15:20:36   
Darren Rhodes Avon County  20/04/2002 13:03:01 Good luck with the campaign. You have my full support. 
Jeremy Boote Dowing College  11/04/2002 17:52:11 Its the right thing to do 
Miguel Bravo-Escos CSR Rowing - Cantabs  11/04/2002 09:05:52 What happened to Leo must NOT happen again. 
Allison Sheard Argonaut Rowing Club, Toronto, Ontario  11/04/2002 01:49:23 Seems a shame that such a logical solution to a safety issue would have to come to petitions. Hopefully minds will change soon. 
Andy Coniglio Marietta College Crew/Lookout Rowing Club  11/04/2002 01:34:58 Vespoli and King eights, various fours... I'm pretty sure they all have floatation. Seen pairs float. We have the tie-in rule. Doesn't work on the bottom of the river. FISA? Little help please? 
Geoff Jesus College BC, Camb  10/04/2002 18:37:21   
Mia Hardy Minerva Bath  10/04/2002 13:52:39 Most of our club-boats are Janouseks, but I strongly suspect that one of our boats is not "appropriately buoyant". I have now informed my club-captain and safety officer about this. 
Mark Ruscoe Furnivall Sculling Club  09/04/2002 22:37:35   
Hywel Gyles Jesus College Boat Club (Oxford) & Nephthys 2002  09/04/2002 19:44:31 It's good that you can now be yellow and safe, remember pretty much all boats can now be fitted with something to make them safer... 
Nick Suess ANA Rowing Club, Bayswater, Western Australia  09/04/2002 07:30:51 As a regular rsr contributor, my opinions are fairly well known.

I talk to a lot of rowing people here in Australia, where there is the typical conservatism on boat design and resistance to change, so anything will be slow to happen until some clear direction is established in Britain, when I anticipate we will start to follow the trend. So please keep lobbying the ARA!


John Mulholland Hexham RC  08/04/2002 22:36:07 I fully support this campaign and, as soon as I have secured funding and fitting of buoyancy to our only non-buoyant boat, I will sign up for the club, of which I am Captain. 
Leo Smith The Queen's College Oxford BC, Warwick BC  08/04/2002 22:30:58   
Debbie Androlia ex-Downing College  07/04/2002 21:45:38   
Sarah Farquhar Emmanuel Boat Club  05/04/2002 23:05:50 Having seen the conditions on the Tideway when the WHoRR was cancelled a few weeks ago, and that some boats were out in there I find it really hard to understand why manufacturers don't fit bouyancy compartments as standard - after all, its the safety of their customers that they should be thinking of. Bouyancy compartments also have the added benefit of keeping your kit dry! 
Pete Watson Avon County  05/04/2002 20:51:29 I can't see any rational reason against your campaign. Good luck, I'm sure there's a lot of inertia to overcome. 
Emma Weisblatt Rob Roy  05/04/2002 15:43:41   
Colin Speller Parrs Priory (ex-NatWest RC)  05/04/2002 15:40:24 Pointless waiting for the ARA or FISA to actually DO anything. Its not the way they work (if they work).
You only have to monitor heel restraints at regattas, boating without lights in the dark on the tideway, cox experience, ignorant launch drivers, etc., etc., to realise how hopeless the so called govorning body like the ARA (that takes a membership fee) is at govorning the sport.
Is there not a market/opening here for something like expanded polystyrene foam that can be fitted in the spaces under the seats by clubs/crews themselves? 
Noel Boylan UCDBC  05/04/2002 14:11:34 Good luck with the campaign, hopefully people will listen 
Jane Fisher Thames RC  05/04/2002 13:33:18   
Wilf Williams Treviris Trier (Germany)  04/04/2002 08:14:04 Yesterday I wathched the 1978 boatrace sinking incident. It's just common sense isn't it?  
Caroline Coats Imperial College  03/04/2002 22:04:58   
Laura Blackburn Caius BC  03/04/2002 22:04:41   
Andrew Sage Hatfield College Boat Club  03/04/2002 22:03:33 This is something that needs to be taken up by everyone who rows, not just those who row on large rivers like the Tideway. The one time I have seen a boat sink was on the Wear in Durham where the banks were only 6 or 7 metres away. The weather was fine and warm, but the wind picked up throughout the outing and the boat (an Aylings) started shipping water and sank in seconds. Fortunately the crew had only a very short swim but on a larger river in colder conditions the results may have been tragic, its good to know that so many people are signing up. 
Robert Kronitis Berri Rowing Club, South Australia  03/04/2002 10:57:32 Makes sense. 
Michael Reed New York Athletic Club  02/04/2002 16:53:17 Enough excuses: it's easy to do, cheap, and effective.

While some argue over whether or not it's the perfect solution, another
young life may be lost! 
Anne Harrison Cambridge '99 RC  02/04/2002 16:27:22 I'm glad to see the vice captain and equipment officer of my club have already signed up! 
Ronald Florence   02/04/2002 15:25:35 I wholeheartedly support the campaign. A
simple and relatively inexpensive change
can make boats safer for masters and
inexperienced rowers, and for top-notch
athletes caught in sudden and unexpected
Aidan Roberson Pembroke College Boat Club, Cambridge  30/03/2002 22:50:37   
Masa Mlakar Peterhouse Boat Club (Cambridge)  30/03/2002 10:44:32 There really isn't very much more to say. Safety should be our utmost priority regardless of water we row on! 
Carolyne Davidson ex Clare College BC  29/03/2002 20:25:49   
Mel Harbour Peterhouse BC  29/03/2002 19:41:34   
Richard Engelbrecht-Wiggans None  29/03/2002 02:12:40 Its been thirty years since I've rowed in an eight. For years, my own rowing craft have been bouyant enough to be fully rowable even when fully swamped. I simply presumed that the same was true for bigger shells...and am appalled to discover that something as simple and effective as underseat bouyancy isn't already the norm.  
Kat Graham Emmanuel College, Cambridge  28/03/2002 23:39:51   
Stan Collingwood Thames Tradesmens  26/03/2002 13:16:00 The attitude of too many competitors, coaches and club officers in our sport has been cavileer towards safety for too long. After more than 20 years & several serious accidents we still have crews afloat after dark without lights, we still have crews turning up to race without adequate heel restraints in their boats, we still have crews turning up to race who can't be bothered to read the instructions sent out before hand, we still have crews sent to race whose coxes have not been coached & who have no idea how to get attached to stake boats, we still have boats going afloat that have nt been properly checked before boating. I am delighted that this independant attempt is being made to made the sport safer - though very sad at the reason for its existence.The boats lacking in bouyancy seem to be used either by the least experienced, or by those who are so experienced they believ it will never happen to them. I hope the campaign succeeds
Alex Hussey Imperial College  26/03/2002 12:42:21   
Katy Cameron Strathclyde University BC  25/03/2002 14:03:11   
Charlotte Eborall Downing College Boat Club  24/03/2002 19:39:28   
Terry Cook Warrington  24/03/2002 13:00:56   
John Hill City of Oxford RC  22/03/2002 21:25:43 nough has been said on the r.s.r. I await positive lead from boatbuilders who, like car manufacturers, can anticipate need for change without "legislation". handson@onetel.net.uk 
Bryony Jackson Imperial College  22/03/2002 16:24:06   
Jim Newton Star  22/03/2002 13:03:01   
Laurence Edge Warrington  22/03/2002 11:26:08   
Helen Ferrier Thames Tradesmens Rowing Club  22/03/2002 08:51:50 People who don't know about rowing ask me if we wear life jackets when we are in the boat. This seems absurd to rowers and I'm not suggesting we do but I'm sure most rowers have felt (at least) a bit scared in very rough water at some point in their careers. If it can be done, why not make it safer? 
Neil Wallace Inverness Rowing Club  21/03/2002 21:57:42 I would like to see this isue given a higher profile by all our governing bodies.
In a world where the climate is becoming ever more unpredictable, it is imperative that lessons are learnt from this tragic, unnecessary loss of life.
New boats should have build-in buoyancy such that the craft remains rowable for as long as posible in the event of a swamping.
Recommendations should also be made on the way older boats could be similarly adapted. 
Howard Versey St andrews and Manchester universities  21/03/2002 21:10:29 I was president at St andrews last year and have seen boats swaped on our tiny tidal stretch both a burgashel 2- and janousek 4+ had bouyancy and older wood shells float swamped, however i am now rowing simms boats at MUBC and wonder about thier survivability esp for bowloaded 4+'s
Sailing boats must be boyancy tested to race, the same criteria should apply to rowing boats and canoes. 
Simon Blackburn First & Third Trinity BC, Black Prince BC, Shoreham RC  21/03/2002 19:18:27   
Geoff PIne Furnivall Sculling Club.  21/03/2002 15:35:37 It makes absolutely no sense not to have them. Especially on the tideway. Please give us a wider choice of boats. 
Sarah Payne Thames RC and ex OUWBC  21/03/2002 14:37:59   
Melanie Reichelt UTRC  21/03/2002 12:53:33   
Kathryn Ward Germania, frankfurt, ex TRC, OUWLRC & Worcester College Oxford  21/03/2002 11:39:48 action - I'm going to contact the German rowing authorities to check on buoyancy. This is a scary subject; I've "submarined" many a time on the Tideway in eights and my scull. We need all boats to be built buoyant, and consensus from boat makers on how to CREATE buoyancy in existing fleets without sacrificing speed. Then we can be sure that all crews - as well as all clubs - will want to DO this immediatly without excuse.  
Amy Allen Downiong College Boat Club  21/03/2002 11:18:43   
Alex Duncan Thames RC  21/03/2002 08:57:21 I think this campaign should be embraced more fully by the rowing community at large, until we see the changes needed to buoyancy in rowing boats, before another such tradgedy occurs. 
Edd Knowles Emmanuel Boat Club (Cambridge)  21/03/2002 00:11:03 Can only agree with what's above, sort it out please ARA. 
Brian Chapman Grosvenor  20/03/2002 22:54:52   
Jeremy Fagan Burton Leander, ex-OULRC and QCBC  20/03/2002 22:16:57 Please go one stage further than this petition and write to your national governing body - show them how much you care! 
Amy Graveston Rob Roy BC  20/03/2002 20:26:26   
Paul Sansome Leander, CULRC, Fitzwilliam College BC, Marlow RC  20/03/2002 17:25:57 Since boats are built that both win gold medals and have sufficient buoyancy, this should be a non-issue. Both FISA and the ARA should give this serious consideration. Consideration should also be given to training oarsmen what the safest course of action is in these circumstances (I don't think anyone even asked if I could swim!) 
Thomas Johnson Robinson College Boat Club  20/03/2002 14:58:13   
Deri Morgan ex-Downing College Boat Club  20/03/2002 14:48:09   
Alex Steward ex- Downing College  20/03/2002 14:16:54 I can only re-emphasise what has been said already and sign up to this cause whole-heartedly. Let's get this sorted so we can prevent another tragedy.  
Rachel Ingram Downing College BC  20/03/2002 13:14:39   
Ilona Groark Downing College BC  20/03/2002 13:14:10   
Ruth Willott UTRC  20/03/2002 11:51:45   
James Felt various  20/03/2002 11:44:20   
Mike Taylor Cambridge 99  20/03/2002 08:37:00 A recommendation from the ARA that new boats be built with inbuilt buoyancy would be a massive step in the right direction to preventing more tragic, avoidable losses. 
Tony Curran Ottawa RC  20/03/2002 00:51:02 Back in November 1988, on Elk Lake, British Columbia, two high school students losts their lives in a very similar incident in which Leo lost his. With this in mind, I have raised the issue of buoyancy on this side of the Atlantic with Rowing Canada Aviron, the Canadian rowing association, the two prominent boat builders, the executive of the Ottawa Rowing Club and at least one member of each of the rowing clubs in Canada. 
Jonathan Anderson Cambridge '99 RC  19/03/2002 23:40:46 We recently switched our first eight boat from a Sims to a Janousek with in-built buoyancy. I'm a lot happier about racing on the Tideway now.
What happened to Leo must never ever happen again.
Stephen Sloan Brasenose College BC, Oxford  19/03/2002 23:29:04   
Karen Braun-Munzinger Merton College Boat Club  19/03/2002 20:11:52   
Richard Sinnott Warrington  19/03/2002 19:21:00 I have been thinking about this subject for some time and the tragic events that took Leo away have sharpend my resolve to do something about it. Maybe we could bombard FISA with mail to get them to take a lead and investigate the problems of buoyancy.
What is the point of heel restraints in the ARA Safety Code if the boat sinks.
Graham Purves Formerly Christ Church, Oxford  19/03/2002 15:04:38 When I first started rowing I somewhat naively assumed that all boats had enough built in bouyancy to support the crew, when swamped, though I soon
realised this was not the case. I see no real reason why it should not be the
case that all new boats meet this fairly basic requirement for buoyancy. A
small amount of exra weight carried pales into insignificance if it will save a life.
Pete Clarke ex-Downing College  19/03/2002 14:38:45 peter.clarke@accenture.com 
Alasdair Anderson Glasgow UBC  19/03/2002 12:37:41   
Steve King ex St Edmund Hall BC Oxford  19/03/2002 11:04:50 I'm no longer actively rowing, but this
is a cause that's well worth supporting 
Carl Douglas None  19/03/2002 10:44:07 I represent Carl Douglas Racing Shells. Leo's death was a tragic loss &, to a large degree, unnecessary & avoidable. Nor was it a novel event. In most years a rower will die somewhere in the world, as Leo did, in direct consequence of the swamping of an eight or four If all manufacturers built their shells with the buoyancy to float with their crew seated, which is cheap & easy to do, most such deaths would be avoided. 
Peter Blaseby Marlow Rowing Club and RGS High Wycombe BC  19/03/2002 10:05:23 In the past wooden boats were inherently buoyant, even when they had broken up. If the excuse for not having
buoyancy is that this would increase weight then polystyrene can be inserted. Boat builders should take the lead and there is nothing worse in rough conditions, when some water has been shipped, to have it sloshing around as you attempt to get back to the clubhouse or bank.

I would hope that the ARA takes a positive line in supporting your campaign. 
Brian McGee Churchill College BC, Cambridge  18/03/2002 15:51:06   
Dominic Higgins Darwin College Cambridge  18/03/2002 11:32:56 I am current safety officer for my boat club. I agree wholeheartedly with the call for buoyancy compartments in all boats. Meanwhile small clubs will carry on with what they've got which makes other safety issues even more important: heel restraints, capsise drills, swimming tests, safe coxing on busy rivers. In my experience of college club rowing at Cambridge even the most basic safety is all too often overlooked. 
Celina Jane Hutton George Washington, Denver, CO USA.  18/03/2002 00:43:45   
Daniel Walker 1st & 3rd Trinity BC, Cambridge  17/03/2002 It's amazing that one of the simplest yet most effective safety devices is still not required. Why make coxes wear lifejackets but leave rowers to fend for themselves? 
Richard Packer Weybridge RC  17/03/2002 True story - rowing on the Tideway with a previous club in 1999 (if memory serves), we had our First Eight (in an open boat) and Second Eight (with built-in buoyancy) training alongside each other. The wind picked up, and both boats started taking on a lot of water. The First Eight sank. The Second Eight (with me in it) got very wet, but kept going. It's beyond any rational argument that adequate built-in buoyancy for all boats should be provided as standard (not as an option). If boat builders won't do it by themselves, then regulation is needed - urgently. In the meantime, don't buy boats that don't float! 
Peter Bannister Wallingford RC  17/03/2002 As one of Leo's crewmates, it's fairly obvious why I'm showing support for this campaign. Please encourage others to sign up so that we can demonstrate the strength of our feelings to those that legislate over boat safety requirements and encourage members of your club responsible for new equipment to consider safety as well as performance. 
A.C. (Bondi) MacFarlane Homerton College BC, Cambridge  17/03/2002 We can never be safe enough. Let's do it! 
Dale Johnson Jesus College BC, Oxford  17/03/2002 I was training with OUWBC at the time on the same stretch of river in Oxford. Anything that can be done to prevent this ever happening again is a step in the right direction. 
Jonathon Davies 1st & 3rd Trinity BC, Cambridge  16/03/2002 There's not much to add to what's already written - it's a very sensible idea, one which hopefully will be listened to. 
James Hanson Warwick School  16/03/2002 Given I have spent over 90% of my rowing & coxing career in Sims VIIIs and Janousek IV+s, and have sunk in a wooden shell, I wholeheartedly support the push for extra buoyancy. 
Tom Radcliffe Downing College Boat Club  16/03/2002 It is an easy change to make, and one that will make all the difference. 
Edward Edmondson Jesus College Oxford and Gloucester  16/03/2002 It seems clear that there isn't any good reason not to have more bouyant shells. Let's get this sorted out now 
Stuart Jones University College BC, Oxford  16/03/2002 Let's hope the governing bodies will listen to what the masses want. At the end of the day if sacrificing a fraction of the race-speed of a boat can result in saving a life by fitting extra buoyancy compartments, it should become as important a part of a boat as heel restraints and bow balls. 
Nick Morrell Hatfield College Boat Club, Durham  16/03/2002 As far as I can see there is no reason why a boat shouldn't have underseat buoyancy, and still be at FISA minimum weight. It is time that the ARA acted on the lesson's learnt from Leo's death, and did something that will ultimately increase the safety of our sport - simply make the recommendation that every boat should be able to support its crew, even when swamped. 
C Smith Somerville College BC, Oxford  15/03/2002 I was Leo's cox, and am the webmaster of this site. It's nice to finally feel that I am doing something tangible in the crusade for better buoyancy. 
Henry Law Agecroft RC, Manchester  15/03/2002 We need to do this; we all know it makes sense. My daughter coxes and therefore wears a life jacket; the rest of the crew (including me in my old age) need to be safe too. 
Alex Taylor Downing College Boat Club  15/03/2002 I hope that the rules will change to prevent the needless loss of another life, particularly of a person as brilliant and such a good friend as Leo was. 

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