How to Survive Cold Water Immersion

by Survival tips on


With summer season here and 90 degree temperatures scheduled for tomorrow in the New York City metropolitan area, people can’t wait to hit local beaches and go boating or sailing. It is important to know, however, how to keep yourself safe should you wind up unplanned in open waterways. Here are some cold water safety survival tips courtesy of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers:

First, all boaters should wear a life jacket and dress for the water temperature, rather than the air temperature outside. This also goes for surfers who should wear a wet suit that is appropriate for water temperature instead of the outside temperature. In the case of boating, cold water immersion often happens following an accident. There are four stages of immersion: cold shock, then swimming failure, hypothermia and finally, post-rescue collapse. Fatalities often occur in the first two stages.

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