Coast Guard Reminds of the Dangers of Cold Water

With the colder temperatures moving across Michigan this week, the Coast Guard once again wants to remind those heading out on the water of the dangers of cold water.

Freezing air and water temperatures significantly decrease survival time for anyone immersed in the water or trapped on the ice.

Each winter the Coast Guard 9th District, which covers the Great Lakes, responds to hundreds of ice rescues.

They also conduct many ice rescue training exercises, which can be seen in this video.

In the last two winters alone, Coast Guard crews were involved in 142 ice rescue cases and saved or assisted 121 people.

If you decide to head out on the water, the Coast Guard recommends taking precautions, not chances.

The risk of death from accidentally falling in the water is higher in the winter than it is in the summer.

Don’t forget to dress for the cold water temps.  Even if you are not planning to enter the water, doesn’t mean that you might not still end up falling in.  The cold water dramatically lowers your body heat, faster than cold air does.

And every minute in that cold water counts.  Always tell others where you’re going and when you plan to be back.  Don’t forget a radio or a personal locater beacon as well.

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