Offshore handling of the MK50 Lifejacket & PSTASS (EBS)

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We have received some information from Survitec about the handling of the MK50 lifejacket and PSTASS (EBS) when travelling offshore. Please see the note below - you can download a pdf of this alert here



  • Each Mk50 lifejacket with PSTASS (EBS) cylinder & PLB weighs approx. 4kg

  •  Particular care needs to be taken with the compressed air cylinder (PSTASS)



  • Each lifejacket freight bag contains 3 blue purge button covers, these are tied into the bag. There are also padded dividers zipped into the bag which are used to separate the jackets & provide additional protection for the equipment.

  • As the purge button covers are made of fairly rigid plastic they will protect the purge button from being inadvertently pressed during transit. The PSTASS air supply must remain switched on at all times, this includes when the jackets are in the bag.
  • Place the first jacket into the freight bag & carefully fit the blue cover that is tied into the bottom section of the bag over the mouthpiece.

  • Fold the first of the padded dividers over the jacket. You will see the blue cover for the next jacket is attached above this divider.

  • The jackets should be placed in the bag facing alternate directions & a purge button cover should be fitted to each mouthpiece, the padded dividers should be folded down between jackets.
  • A maximum of 3 jackets are to be placed in each of the orange transport bags – for manual handling purposes please be aware that the weight of a bag containing 3 jackets is approx. 16kg
  • If there are less than 3 jackets in the bag carefully store the unused blue covers in the bag & fold the remaining dividers back in.
  • There Is a window pocket on the top of the bag that can be used to contain details of the flight number/flight routing



  • Using the handle on the blue purge button cover carefully remove it from the mouthpiece.

  • Carefully remove the jacket from the bag.
  • Once all required jackets have been removed place the blue covers back in the bag, fold the padded dividers back in & close it.
  • Check that the PSTASS pressure gauge reads 200 bar or more

  • Ensure that the air supply is switched on, the ratchet knob should be turned fully anti-clockwise to the left.

  • The green pressure on indicator pin should be raised within the red castellation’s.

  • The passenger must then carry out the 3 point checks prior to donning the life jacket as follows:
    1. Check the pressure gauge reads 200 bar or more
    2. Ensure the valve ratchet knob is turned fully anti-clockwise to turn on
    3. Ensure the green indicator pin is raised within the red castellations


Any Mk50/PSTASS assembly deemed unserviceable for use due to any of the following reasons, must have an unserviceable/warning label attached around the neck of the PSTASS cylinder to highlight the assembly is not serviceable. This will prevent any possible inadvertent issue to passengers during transit between multiple installations and return to base/mainland

  • The pressure gauge reads less than 200 bar
  • The green pin (pressure indicator) is not out as illustrated above
  • If there is any visible damage to the Life Jacket or PSTASS

The label should, where possible, state the fault and that the assembly is to be returned to the heliport departure location for investigation.

Once all inbound passengers have donned their survival suits & life jackets the following brief should be given:

Can I have your attention please?

Can you please ensure that the neck and wrist seals of your suit are of the correct fit to provide a watertight seal?

Can you check that you have gloves in the sleeve pockets on the suit and a hood in the left leg pocket?

Please look to ensure that your suit zip is fully closed, is in the locked position & that the zip pull tab is tucked up under the suit zip protective flap.

Is everyone happy with the fit of their suit?

Please take care when donning or removing your lifejacket. Could you all check that the waist & crotch straps & those of your fellow passengers have not become twisted whilst donning & that any loose ends have been tucked away.

Please check that the air supply from your PSTASS cylinder is switched on, the black ratchet knob on the cylinder should be fully open which means it should be turned as far as it can be counter clockwise. Please take care not to over tighten the ratchet knob in either direction.

Check that the green pressure indicator pin is raised within the red castellations.

Check that the pressure gauge on the cylinder reads 200 bar or more.

The purge button on the mouthpiece should not be used unless required during an emergency deployment. Use of the purge button will rapidly deplete the air in the cylinder resulting in less air being available/breathing time should the system need to be used.

On arrival at your destination the air supply from your PSTASS cylinder must remain switched on.

Does anyone have any questions regarding the use of the lifejacket & breathing system?