Safety and survival on the water is an important consideration for anyone who spends time on or near the water. It’s particularly worse during cold weather when cold water survival adds another dimension to the danger of water.
The Water Is Cold
The clocks go ahead tonight and with that we are heralding the coming of a cottage goers favorite time of year, Spring! Yup, Spring is just around the corner. Ice is leaving the lakes and we will soon be on the water again in our boats and canoes.
But even with our excitement and exhuberance for the coming better weather, it’s not the time to forget that the water, although no longer frozen, is still darn cold. It is not the time to scrimp on water safety and boat safety.
According to statistics from The Lifesaving Society, 410 people drowned in Canada in 2004. 130 of those drowned were boating and 60% died by drowning in water under 10 degrees celcius.
Another 34% died drowning in water between 10 – 20 degrees celcius. 26% fell or were thrown overboard and 48% were in a boat that capsized or was swamped.
It’s important to be prepared and practice boating safety at any time of the year, but the cold water of early Spring adds an additional danger, hypothermia, to the mix. In many “drownings” it’s not exactly the water that kills the victim, it’s the cold.
Cold Water Boot Camp
I came across a website devoted to cold water survival that provides some excellent information for boaters and others who spend time on the water.
As part of their study of the dangers of cold water immersion, they had volunteers who went into 6 degree Celsius water to see what happens….(bet you are glad they didn’t ask you to volunteer)
There is lots of valuable things about water safety, cold water survival and boat safety to learn on this site, things that could very well save your life or the life of a loved one. There are video clips of the volunteers cold water immersions, to show you what the experience is like.
You can learn Dr Gordon Giesbrecht’s 1-10-1 formula for survival in cold water.
In addition there is lot’s of valuable info on lifejackets, and medical and physical data related to immersion in cold water, as well as what you need to know about hypothermia.
Here’s a short video to give you an idea about Cold Water Boot Camp.
I encourage you to check out their website, it may save your life. Here is the link: Cold Water Boot Camp I found this page, Hypothermia Demystified very helpful. It explains the three stages of hypothermia, mild, moderate and severe and what to do about each stage to ensure survival. Good stuff to know before you need to know it…..
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