the many hundreds of boats actively moving about the waters of shores
bays there is always the possibility of accidentally falling into the
capsizing or becoming the victim of foul weather.
Seven Steps To
Survival at sea
depends on the recognition that you are in danger of losing your life.
There are commonly described "seven steps" to survival that may make a
difference in the outcome of some rather terrible situations. Even an
fairly close inshore in cold water can quickly lead to hypothermia and
drowning. The seven steps to survival are: recognition, inventory,
water, food, signals and play. Of course, flotation is a prerequisite
any survival after only a short time in the water. Other factors come
play, the most important of which is unmeasurable, "the will to live".
The seven steps
to survival include recognizing that you are in peril and realizing
what you are wearing constitutes a form of shelter. Water is kept in
rafts and you have keys, a mirror or plastic containers that might come
in handy. Check to see what food might be floating around you and
it if possible. Use signals in the form of mirrors, flares, colored
or waving arms, suits or objects about to attract attention. Finally,
comes into action as you have memories, fantasies, prayer, tell jokes
get rid of your anger.
number one cause of overboard situations and is the number two cause of
fatalities in boating accidents. Other causes of overboard situations
heavy seas due to foul weather, urinating or vomiting over the side,
sickness, alcohol or drugs, sitting on the outside of the deck
moving about the vessel without holding on, boat making high speed or
turns without warning, being knocked over by the sail boom and slipping
on wet surfaces.
It is hard to
swim normal distances in an emergency situation. There is a rapid heat
loss and incapacitation which causes inappropriate behaviors, such as,
taking off clothes and shoes. A personal flotation device should be
on the water at all times. Have you ever wondered why the Coast Guard
have their PFD's on?
(PFD's) that were previously mentioned keep your head up and
of the water and afloat even when you are unconscious. It's best not to
swim or exercise vigorously as this will increase the loss of heat.
yourself 45 degrees toward the oncoming waves to avoid "surface
Gather together in a group if there are more than one person.
falling overboard should always be uppermost in your mind. The PFD
always be worn when on deck. Hang on--"one hand for the boat and one
me" when working on a rocking boat. Don't sit or lean on lifelines,
on the bight of a line or sleep topside. Don't sit on rails or gunwales
without a lifeline or go on deck at night, in a fog or during heavy
without a lifeline and tell someone else when you do. Don't urinate or
vomit over the side without a line. Walk and work in pairs on deck and
wear proper footwear.
one must realize that the sea is an alien environment and even though
may think we are invincible, immortal and can even swim a little bit --
when in the water out of sight of land we need to use all of our
just to survive.