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    The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers strives to promote the water safety message



    Story by Tiffany Natividad 

    U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Tulsa District

    Tulsa, OK - The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers strives to promote the water safety message. With colder weather approaching, it is important to remember that visitation to our waterways does not stop when the summer season is over and cold water presents its own hazards.

    The most important practice in, on or around the water is to wear your life jacket. It takes as little as 30 minutes for an adult of average size to lose dexterity in waters of 60 to 70 degrees, and as little as two hours to become unconscious. Without a life jacket, this will likely result in drowning.

    Water temperatures below 70 degrees will quickly lower body temperature resulting in hypothermia, which can cause a loss of dexterity, motor control, mental confusion, and unconsciousness. While water surface temperatures may still be warmer, water below the surface can quickly drop below 50 degrees. Water this cold can physically incapacitate someone in less than 10 minutes, leaving them physically helpless in the water unable to use their arm, legs, feet, and hands.

    Wearing a life jacket not only will help you stay afloat but will also help you retain body heat in your core. If you do fall in the water, and can’t climb out, immediately go into a Heat Escape Lessening Position (H.E.L.P). Make yourself as small as possible by curling your legs up to your chest. This prevents heat from escaping from your body. The Red Cross estimates the H.E.L.P can increase survival rates in cold water by up to 50%.

    If you are with a group of people, HUDDLE together. This will help you all stay warm, will make you easier for your rescuers to spot, and will help ensure that no one in your group get lost.

    A few rules to follow when visiting our waterways:
    • Remember to always wear your lifejacket and to dress for the water temperature and not air temperature by wearing wet suits, dry suits, immersion suits, survival suits, and exposure coveralls.
    • File a float plan with someone you trust. The plan should include details about the trip, boat, passengers, towing or trailer vehicle, communication equipment, and emergency contacts.
    • Know before you go! Check the weather and water temperature before going out on the water.
    • If you find yourself in a compromising position always remember to stay calm and get out of the water as soon as possible if it is safe to do so.



    Date Taken: 11.18.2021
    Date Posted: 11.18.2021 15:08
    Story ID: 409618
    Location: TULSA, OK, US 

    Web Views: 80
    Downloads: 0