Evie’s Sun Smart Inflatable Rashie
  |  First Published: March 2012

The need for a PFD (Personal Floatation Device) that is comfortable, fits well, and more importantly is safe and effective is paramount for water enthusiasts. Evie (Emergency Vest Inflatable Equipment) are the world’s first rated sun smart inflatable swim shirt developed for safety, comfort and sun protection.

There are plenty of inflatable PFDs on the market these days, but none have the list of features and benefits of the Evie range of Sun Smart Inflatable Rashies. Available in long and short sleeve, the revolutionary hybrid PFD/swim shirt is a patent and patent-pending product available online from an affordable $40.

Evie’s inflatable range of products is comprehensive and is designed to give protection from the sun’s harmful rays, as well as avert drowning in the pool or at the beach. It’s a double whammy of protection that is comfortable to wear and effective in an emergency situation. Evie products have been accepted under the new Australian Standards for floatation devices, which means you can legally carry particular models on board water craft.

Applications for Evie

Evie has many applications: learning to swim; hydrotherapy; boating; rock fishing; surfing; snorkelling; and kayaking. Their inflatable range of products is designed to keep the wearer’s head in a position where the mouth and nose are above the water. The design also means that a wearer cannot roll forward or to the side into a position where drowning may occur, which is the real success of this product.

I wore my Evie on a recent trip down to Victoria, where it is mandatory to wear a PFD in a vessel underway. I found it comfortable to wear all day and after the first half an hour, I really didn’t know I had it on. I used a manual inflation model as the heat of the day along the Murray often meant that we simply jumped over the side of the boat to cool off. The automatic inflation models would have been disastrous in this situation because I can guarantee I would have forgotten I had the Evie on until I hit the water and found myself floating in the rescue position. Funny for my mates, but maybe not so funny for me.

Nevertheless this did highlight the usefulness of this product for people like rock fishers who never want to go in the water but if they do, they want a reliable and effective means of staying afloat and alive. The automatic unit in this situation would be brilliant.

The applications for Evie are as limited as your imagination if you’re into watersports. My daughter has a pink automatic inflation unit that I can use in still waters legally for her. She loves it, and when it comes time to go for a swim I simply disconnect the automatic inflation unit and the Evie becomes a manual inflation unit. Brilliant!

Oral Inflatable Rashie

The Evie Oral Sun Smart Inflatable Swim Shirt is best suited for adults and children who need the added buoyancy in the water. Those who are learning to swim will gain added confidence as you can inflate the shirt less each time.

It’s also ideal for children at the beach. The shirt can be worn as a sun-shirt until they are ready to go swimming, and then it’s just a few puffs to get the shirt inflated and ready for a dip.

Manual Inflatable Rashie

The Evie Manual Sun Smart Inflatable Rashie/Swim Shirt is perfect for those who are confident in the water but also like to know there is that added degree of safety in case of trouble.

The toggle can be pulled and within seconds the concealable chamber inflates, providing stability and buoyancy keeping the wearer safe and afloat until help arrives.

Automatic Inflatable Rashie

The Evie Automatic Sun Smart Inflatable Rashie/Swim Shirt is suitable for people who are boating, fishing or for anyone that is around water but not wanting to venture into the water.

The automatic shirt will inflate without any manual activation at all. If someone wearing this shirt falls into the water and suffers a blow to the head that renders them incapable of pulling the toggle, it will inflate automatically within a second, placing their head into a safe position above the water line and may avert a tragedy.

Meeting the standard

The Inflatable Rashie has met the challenge of providing the best quality inflatable products that meet the new Australian Standard for the design and manufacture of PFDs and floatation aids. These standards are PFD1, PFD1S and AS1900-2002. It is not a swimming aid, but a full personal floatation device. The difference between the two is explained below.

Swimming Aids

The mandatory standard for swimming and flotation aids came into effect on 1 April 2010 and is the only mandatory standard for swimming and flotation aids. It covers labelling for swimming and flotation aids.

Under the new mandatory standard, swimming and flotation aids are items made for children under 14 years old. The aids are used to help children gain confidence and become familiar with water, and stay afloat while learning to swim. Swimming and flotation aids come in several forms that children can either wear, have attached to their bodies or sit in to stay afloat. They include but are not limited to:

• Armbands;

• Attached rings;

• Swimming aid vests.

They do not include:

• Inflatable novelty shapes;

• Unattached rings — complete or partial;

• Kickboards;

• Items for therapeutic use by people with a disability;

• Life jackets or other personal flotation devices.

Swimming and flotation aids are not safety devices. A competent adult should constantly watch children using these aids.


PFDs made to the new Australian Standard 4758 are now starting to appear on retailers’ shelves, and were accepted by all marine safety authorities by 1 July 2010.

Most PFDs made to the old standards will be recognised for many years to come and in the majority of cases people won’t need to replace their existing PFDs as long as they are serviceable.

AS 4758 is being introduced to more closely align with international standards and takes into account advances in PFD design and manufacture.

PFDs made to AS 4758 are marked as:

• Level 150 – similar to inflatable PFD Type 1 and suitable for offshore use.

• Level 100 – similar to PFD Type 1 and the minimum requirement for offshore use.

• Level 50 – similar to PFD Type 2.

• Level 50 Special Purpose (50s) – to replace PFD Type 3.

Some states have applied limits to accepting older existing PFDs based on when they were manufactured. If you have an existing PFD made to the old standards, it is important that you contact your local marine safety authority to find out if it is still accepted.

PFDs are a key safety feature in recreational boating. A National Marine Safety Committee (NMSC) study found that people who survived a boating incident were more than two times more likely to have been wearing a PFD compared to those who died. It concluded that if PFD usage increased to 50%, 2-3 lives could be saved nationally each year.

For more details on PFD laws in your state, please contact your local marine safety agency.

Get One, or three

If sun protection, life protection and comfort are on your agenda for a PFD then the Evie range of products should be taken very seriously. At present they are only available on line at www.evie.net.au where the full range of products is found.


What a Deal!

Trade in your old life jackets! IR Pty Ltd is pleased to announce that 2012 will see the introduction of ‘New for Old’. IR will for a small fee, plus postage, replace ANY PFD1 Inflatable Life Jacket on the market (due for its annual service) with a brand new Automatic/Manual Evie Inflatable PFD1.

Log onto www.evie.net.au for more information on this service.

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