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    what is the primary danger during the first 3–5 minutes if you are suddenly immersed in cold water?

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    Cold Water Immersion

    Many boat related fatalities are a result of falling overboard or a boat capsizing in cold water. Learn the cold water immersion stages and survival tips now!

    Cold Water Immersion: Stages and Survival Tips for Boating

    Every year, many drowning and boat related fatalities are the direct result of a fall overboard or a boat capsizing in cold water.

    Why is cold water immersion so dangerous? Because cold water literally "shocks" the body and causes it to slowly shut down, making drowning much more likely.

    As a boater, you want to avoid cold water whenever possible and take extra caution whenever boating in cold water environments.

    You also need to know some survival tips in the event of an emergency situation where you do end up in cold water. We'll review these tips, as well as the stages of cold water immersion, in more detail in next.

    For now, remember that your priority in the case of cold water immersion is to get yourself out of the water as quickly as possible using whatever means available.

    Now let's look at the different stages the body goes through when immersed in cold water. This will help you understand why cold water is so serious.

    Cold Water Immersion Stages and Physiological Response

    When a person falls into cold water, their body experiences a variety of physiological responses that relate both to the temperature of the water and the amount of time they are in contact with the water. When immersed in cold water, the body goes through the following stages.

    Stage 1 of Cold water Immersion: Initial Immersion or Cold Water Shock

    When a person first falls into cold water, their initial reaction will be a “gasp reflex”. This reflex often includes hyperventilation and muscle spasms, and, as a result of gasping for air, can lead to the inhalation of water. It can also lead to changes in heart rate and blood pressure. These first effects usually last about two to three minutes at which point the body starts to experience more serious changes.

    Stage 2 of Cold Water Immersion: Short-term Immersion

    It only takes a few minutes for your body to start losing basic motor skills when immersed in cold water. After as little as three minutes, you may start to lose strength and sensation in your hands, which will also affect your ability to swim, regardless of how good a swimmer you are. Boaters often drown as a result of swimming failure even before hypothermia has had the chance to set in.

    Stage 3 of Cold Water Immersion: Longer Term Immersion

    After about 30 minutes of cold-water immersion, the body's core temperature will drop below the safe normal level. This is called hypothermia. The core temperature will continue to drop until it has reached the same temperature as the water, and the person will lapse into unconsciousness.

    Stage 4 of Cold Water Immersion: Post-rescue Collapse

    A drop in blood pressure resulting from hypothermia may cause the person to become unconscious, or even stop breathing, even several hours after the rescue. For this reason, a person suffering from hypothermia needs to receive medical attention as soon as possible following rescue from the water.

    A person suffering from hypothermia should receive medical attention as soon as possible.

    Cold Water Immersion Prevention

    Boats capsizing and falls overboard are the leading causes of cold-water immersion.

    Capsizing is most often caused by overloading, unsafe boat handling, improper anchoring, or the loss of power or steering. Falls overboard are most often caused by slips or falls while moving around a boat.

    These emergencies can be prevented by always staying low and stable while moving about your boat and by taking care to follow the guidelines for safe loading and operation in bad weather.

    These are important guidelines at all times but especially in cold water environments, where the consequences of a fall overboard or capsizing can be much more serious.

    Cold Water Immersion Survival and Recovery

    If you fall overboard or your boat capsizes in cold water, your number one priority is to get yourself out of the water as soon as possible. Hopefully, there will be another boat nearby to come to your aid. If not, you may be able to get out of the water by either climbing onto your capsized boat or any other floating objects; or swimming to shore if it is within reach.

    Before attempting to swim to shore, remember that your ability to swim may begin to be affected in as little as a few minutes and you'll lose the ability to swim within 30 minutes.

    If you're in the water and awaiting rescue, you should do your best to conserve energy and body heat.

    The following tips will help you conserve heat and energy in cold water.

    It is recommended that you practice these cold water immersion recovery techniques so that you can remain calm in the case of an emergency.

    Source : www.boaterexam.com

    Stages 1 and 2 of Cold Water Immersion

    Stages 1 and 2 of Cold Water Immersion

    There are four stages of cold water immersion. This is what happens in the first two stages.

    Stage 1: Initial “cold shock” occurs in the first 3-5 minutes of immersion in cold water. Sudden immersion into cold water can cause immediate, involuntary gasping; hyperventilation; panic; and vertigo—all of which can result in water inhalation and drowning. Immersion in cold water also can cause sudden changes in blood pressure, heart rate, and heart rhythm, which also can result in death.Stage 2: Short-term “swim failure” occurs 3-30 minutes following immersion in cold water. The muscles and nerves in the arms and legs cool quickly. Manual dexterity, hand grip strength, and speed of movement all can drop by 60%-80%. Even normally strong persons can lose the strength necessary to pull themselves out of the water or even to keep their head above water. Death occurs by drowning.

    Source : www.boat-ed.com

    Boaters Safety

    Study with Quizlet and memorize flashcards terms like What colorless, odorless, poisonous gas is a by-product of gasoline engines? carbon disulfide carbon monoxide hydrogen oxide hydrogen sulfide, What is the primary danger during the first 3-5 minutes if you are suddenly immersed in cold water? being run over by another boat and drowning icing of your clothes and PFD, reducing your buoyancy involuntary gasping, leading to water inhalation and drowning losing consciousness due to shock and hyperventilation, Who is responsible for avoiding a collision between two boats? the operators of both boats the operator of the stand-on boat the operator of the smaller boat the operator of the larger boat and more.

    Boaters Safety - Quiz 5

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    What colorless, odorless, poisonous gas is a by-product of gasoline engines?

    carbon disulfide carbon monoxide hydrogen oxide hydrogen sulfide

    Click card to see definition 👆

    carbon monoxide

    Click again to see term 👆

    What is the primary danger during the first 3-5 minutes if you are suddenly immersed in cold water?

    being run over by another boat and drowning

    icing of your clothes and PFD, reducing your buoyancy

    involuntary gasping, leading to water inhalation and drowning

    losing consciousness due to shock and hyperventilation

    Click card to see definition 👆

    involuntary gasping, leading to water inhalation and drowning

    Click again to see term 👆

    1/10 Created by libby_cope

    Terms in this set (10)

    What colorless, odorless, poisonous gas is a by-product of gasoline engines?

    carbon disulfide carbon monoxide hydrogen oxide hydrogen sulfide carbon monoxide

    What is the primary danger during the first 3-5 minutes if you are suddenly immersed in cold water?

    being run over by another boat and drowning

    icing of your clothes and PFD, reducing your buoyancy

    involuntary gasping, leading to water inhalation and drowning

    losing consciousness due to shock and hyperventilation

    involuntary gasping, leading to water inhalation and drowning

    Who is responsible for avoiding a collision between two boats?

    the operators of both boats

    the operator of the stand-on boat

    the operator of the smaller boat

    the operator of the larger boat

    the operators of both boats

    Your boat capsizes but remains afloat. What should you do?

    Swim up under the boat to stay out of the wind.

    Swim away from the boat and tread water.

    Hang onto the boat or climb onto it.

    Remove your life jacket and wave it to signal for help.

    Hang onto the boat or climb onto it.

    What is the proper way to use a fire extinguisher?

    Aim at the top of the flames. Do not move.

    Aim at the top of the flames. Sweep in circles.

    Aim at the base of the flames. Sweep side to side.

    Aim at the base of the flames. Sweep up and down.

    Aim at the base of the flames. Sweep side to side.

    For most people, how many alcoholic drinks does it take before judgment and physical reaction time are impaired?

    one five ten fifteen one

    What is the best way to minimize the risk of dehydration while boating in warm weather?

    Drink plenty of fresh water.

    Take off an outer layer of clothing.

    Put on an extra layer of clothing.

    Wear plenty of sunblock.

    Drink plenty of fresh water.

    When should you replace the CO2 cylinder in an inflatable PFD?

    each time the PFD is inflated

    the third time a PFD is inflated

    monthly annually

    each time the PFD is inflated

    What causes a PFD to wear out over time?

    washing it with soap and water

    storing it upside down

    exposure to cold air and rain

    exposure to ultraviolet rays from the sun

    exposure to ultraviolet rays from the sun

    You are caught in a storm in your boat. Your engine stops. What should you do?

    Swim for shore.

    Tread water until hypothermia occurs.

    Drop a sea anchor off the bow.

    Use all of the life jackets to build a raft.

    Drop a sea anchor off the bow.

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