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    How YOU Could Drown Quiz

    How YOU Could Drown Quiz

    Photo By Pamela Doty | By R.J. Garren read more read more



    Story by Pamela Doty 

    U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Water Safety

    Are you an adult who thinks it’s unlikely that you could ever drown? The month of July is when most boating and swimming accidents and fatalities happen in open waters (lakes, rivers, ponds, and oceans). The Fourth of July holiday weekend is the most hazardous. Take this five-question quiz to see if you can prove why drowning isn’t likely to happen to you. You may learn some tips that could help save your life or the life of someone you love.

    1. Do you know how to swim well? Most adults who drown in open waters were known to be good swimmers. Great swimming ability is one of the things than can help prevent drownings, but the problem is things like currents, wave action, and colder water temperatures when swimming in open waters can reduce your swimming abilities, especially if you don’t swim on a regular basis. Even floating and treading in open waters can be challenging due to waves from boats or wind. Tip #1: Wearing an inflatable, belt-style life jacket is great for those who know how to swim because you hardly know you have it on, and if you need it you can just pull the cord, wait for it to inflate, and pull it over your head.

    2. Do You Know How to Breathe Properly While Swimming? Breath holding during water games, underwater swimming, and swim challenges are common causes of water-related death due to shallow water blackout. This condition happens from holding your breath too long while swimming or over breathing by taking several deep breaths in a row (hyperventilating) before a swim. A simple description of what happens is it can cause you to faint or blackout from low oxygen to your brain. Interestingly, shallow water blackout usually happens to people who know how to swim well, but they deny their bodies desire to inhale for too long. Learn more at Tip #2: It’s best to take swimming lessons to improve your ability to breathe properly while swimming. Avoid breath-holding games and challenging others to swim in open waters to a boat, buoy, island, or across a cove, etc.

    3. Do you avoid drinking alcohol while boating? Avoiding alcohol on any vessel is a good idea because even a day on the water without alcohol can produce something called boater’s hypnosis that has the same symptoms of being under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Boater’s hypnosis is caused by the stress of sun, wind, glare, noise, and motion (vibration) of a boat. These boating stressors can slow your reaction time almost as much as if you were legally intoxicated. Adding alcohol to these stressors multiplies your chances of being in a fatal boating accident. Also, people recreating outside often tend to not drink enough water so they become dehydrated, which can make you very tired. Drinking alcohol and caffeinated drinks have a diuretic effect, which increases urination, decreases hydration, and can make you tired too. Tip #3: Drink plenty of water to avoid becoming dehydrated while you’re enjoying a day out on the water and operate your vessel defensively. Wearing a life jacket helps protect you from others on the water that may be operating recklessly for whatever reasons.

    4. Do you always check the weather before going boating? It’s a good idea to check the weather before you go boating or swimming in open waters; however, that’s not always good enough. Most fatal water-related accidents happen on sunny, calm days when you would least expect it. If you’re out on the water for a long period of time it’s good to keep an eye on the sky and check the weather forecast because surprise storms can pop up. Weather, wave action, and slips are some of the things that can cause you to fall overboard. Falls are the second highest cause of water-related death on U.S. Army Corps of Engineers-managed waters. When the length of a vessel was known, the U.S. Coast Guard reports that eight out of ten boaters who drown were using vessels less than 21 feet in length. Tip #4: Check the weather before you head out and continue to check it while enjoying being in, on, or near the water and always wearing a life jacket while boating can help you survive an unexpected fall overboard.

    5. Do you believe that if you fall overboard you can put your life jacket on in the water? The best way to prove how challenging this can be is for you to try it yourself. If you want to test your skills with putting on a life jacket in the water do it in shallow water without touching the bottom. The fact is that even strong swimmers struggle with doing this task and it takes an average of 10-minutes for an experienced swimmer to put on a life jacket in the water. Wave action and cold water can make doing that nearly impossible. Plus, thinking that you’ll be able to grab a life jacket as you’re falling overboard is as ridiculous as thinking you’ll put on a seat belt just before having a car accident. Tip #5: The time to put on a life jacket is before you get on a boat or in the water because it’s extremely difficult to put it on in the water and you’ll want it on if you’re fighting with wave action waiting to be rescued.

    The best way to pass this quiz and help prevent drowning is to always wear a life jacket whenever you’re in, on, or near the water. By following all these tips you can drastically decrease your chances of becoming a water-related fatality statistic. Share this quiz with those you care about that think they don’t need to wear a life jacket.



    Date Taken: 08.26.2020
    Date Posted: 08.26.2020 23:07
    Story ID: 376878
    Location: US

    Web Views: 50
    Downloads: 0