Rande Wilson of the Coast Guard Auxiliary Live blog has posted an informative article and video on what to do if you find yourself in cold water. It also explains why 20% of victims succumb within the first minute of entering cold water.
I attended a presentation at an Auxiliary National Training meeting called Cold Water Boot Camp, which works in cooperation with many life saving organizations, including the US Coast Guard. I saw a good friend and fellow member of Team Coast Guard—Mario Vittone, USCG Marine Safety Specialist and former Helicopter Rescue Swimmer Instructor—featured in the video.
This is what we learned from Mario Vittone. Fall in cold water? Take 1 minute to stop the panic—you’ve 10 minutes of physical ability to save yourself—and 1 hour of consciousness left. Here’s why.
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