Safety on the Water
This article is just to help with a few tips on what to do if you fall in whilst messing about on the river. Panic can be prevented by following a few simple suggestions. Stay safe and enjoy the water
Safety on the Water
Many people when messing about on water, sometimes find themselves involuntarily in it. Here on the Norfolk Broads, especially after the summer sun, you would think that the water is warm. Wrong, far from it, the water may be warm for the first inch, but below that it is really cold and if you fall in, it is easy to go into cold water shock.
Watch this video to understand how to float properly and what your body is reacting too and prevent the panic that comes with the shock.
If you do find yourself in the water your first instinct is to stand because we all know that the rivers and broads are shallow. Do NOT put your feet down. The rivers and broads are full of weed and lilies which can snag your feet and the silt on the bottom sucks your feet in preventing you from either reaching the surface in deep areas or getting to the bank in shallow areas.
Just stay calm, follow the cold water shock advice, float with your arms and legs spreadeagled, your clothing will trap air and help you stay on the surface and once you are over the initial shock, then skull your hands and get to the boat you fell off or to a ladder or to the bank.
When in the tidal areas of the Broads, try to remember to wear a lifejacket, if you do blunder in then it helps to keep you afloat easily, it is something that another person can grab to help you out and it will keep you warmer in the water, plus it has a whistle to get the attention of others to your situation.
One more thing, try not to swallow the river water - it is not very tasty!
If your dog falls in, do NOT jump in after it to try to rescue it, the dog will be fine. Get onto the bank or hail a passing dinghy for a ride and encourage the dog to swim towards you where you can grab it. Dogs like children should always be wearing a lifejacket. It also helps them conserve their energy if rescue takes a while.
Anyway, stay safe on the water and have a great time
For a few more facts on safety in the water click on this link