The Spinlock Deckvest 5D Pro Sensor was developed just for these needs in order to provide an inflatable life jacket for offshore sailing with a ton of built in features.
In its normal function, it is designed to be lightweight and ergonomic to provide ease of movement. With three points of adjustment it fits close to the body while not being bulky.
It comes with thigh straps, which allows the jacket to sit in the proper position at all times. It has a stretch pocket on one of the sides that is large enough for storage of a strobe or another personal safety device. On the inside of the vest, there is a pocket for the attached emergency line cutter.
With a built in high tensile soft loop for the safety harness, you can be assured that you will stay on the boat while tethered in.
There is also a window to make sure the activation unit is still functional.
The Pro sensor is activated through contact with water. A paper element dissolves to release the mechanism that punctures the gas cylinder inflating the bladder of the life jacket.
Although water activated, the unit is designed to keep rain water or waves from setting off the gas by only allowing water to enter the sensor from the bottom of the unit. However, if you are not looking for an automatic inflation, this jacket can also be converted to manual.
Once inflated, the pylon light also automatically deploys increasing visibility for not only the person in the water, but also acting as a strobe for rescue crews. Lastly, there is a whistle attached to the bladder providing another signaling device.
While it may not be the cheapest inflatable in the category, the amount of built in safety features, and harness, it certainly is worth the extra price. So if you’re an offshore or coastal sailor looking for a jacket with every feature one could want, I would highly recommend the Deckvest 5D Pro Sensor bySpinlock.