Most drownings could have been prevented. What causes them? Drownings occur because the victim made the wrong decision, did not realize the dangers of boating in rough, cold water, was not properly prepared, had the wrong equipment, or failed to wear a life-jacket (PFD). Small boats, by their very nature, are extremely unstable crafts. Often the victim of a small boat accident did not realize just how unstable his craft was. Add to this, cold, rough water, and the chances for survival for the sportsman fallen overboard are very slim. COLD WATER KILLS—even those in excellent condition who know how to swim.
THE FIVE PRIMARY CAUSES OF WATER DEATHS ARE:
- Hypothermia – The rapid loss of body heat in cold water.
- “Dry” Drowning – Constriction of the throat, and the resulting suffocation, due to a sudden inrush of cold water.
- “Wet” Drowning – The displacement of air in the lungs by water.
- Massive Heart Attacks in older, out-of-shape, non-swimmers in cold water.
- Being run over by own boat, especially when starting in gear.
Aggressive CPR (rescue breathing and heart massage) can save your life. What do you and your fishing, hunting, and canoeing friends know about it?
MANY PEOPLE—APPARENTLY DEAD FROM DROWNING—MAY NOT BE!
Cold water not only kills, but in some instances, it preserves. Warming drowning victims from the inside out by CPR or warm, moist inhalation may bring them back to life!
Photo: U-Guide South Dakota Pheasant Hunting (top); Hunter-ed.com (above)