The best piece of safety equipment is Taonui. She is very strongly built and rigged and can take all kinds of knocks and bad weather. There is nothing complicated about her construction, her rig or any of her equipment and systems.
With three watertight bulkheads she can survive a certain amount of damage from a collision, but being run down by a ship is probably the biggest danger. A knockdown or rollover that breaks the mast is another potential danger. The present mast and rig is much stronger than the one we lost in a knockdown off the coast of southern Argentina (see Cruising in Taonui 1996 - 2013). .
There is a four man liferaft on the stern. As a last resort, the EPIRB could be used to summon rescue. The Inmarsat C transceiver also has a distress call capability that includes the yacht's position.
Taonui has a powerful Furono radar that can be programmed to set off an alarm if it detects a "target" (such as a ship or an iceberg) within a pre-detiremined range, usually set at a 12 mile circle around the boat. As a further safeguard against collision with ships, we have recently installed an AIS system which detects VHF signals from any ships in the vicinity.
As a "defence" against really bad weather (winds over 45 - 50 knots and big seas), Taonui carries a 300 foot series-drogue that is deployed off the stern and slows her down to about 1.5 - 2 knots. The drag of the drogue comes from 130 small cones sewn along the line at 18 inch intervals. They exert a steady pull on the stern as opposed to the snapping action of a parachute drogue. We've used it about 8 times in the past 6 years and it's a great way to "stop the world" when things are getting a bit out of hand.