Cold Waters Come With Extra Risks!
ORILLIA, ON, May 15, 2014 /CNW/ - Personal Floatation Devices (PFD) are
rarely found by Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) officers when
recovering deceased boaters in marine incidents.
With Safe Boating Awareness Week getting underway from May 17-23, 2014,
the OPP is shedding light on some notable marine fatality facts and
engaging the public in helping boaters make wise choices on the water.
Of the 23 boaters who died in OPP investigated marine incidents last year (2013),
20 of them were not wearing PFDs. This has been the trend for the past
five years with eight out of ten victims who died in boating incidents
between 2009 and 2013 being found with no PFD (or wearing them
The late arrival of spring has made for a cold start to the boating
season. In some areas of the province, ice is still present and the
open waters remain cold. Cold waters are dangerous and it is especially
important to wear a PFD during cold water seasons - it can make an
unexpected mishap survivable.
Make sure you are well-dressed and consider taking a few extra warming
items on board. Hypothermia is a particularly significant risk right
now. Boaters and those working and playing near the water need to
remember - the colder the water, the less rescue time there is!
Before heading out, it is important to do a thorough check of your boat
and safety equipment and even more important when the waters have just
thawed. While the OPP has patrols underway on the water, they are
reminding boaters that the unusual spring has delayed many operators
and those who run into difficulties may experience delays with police
OPP statistics are also showing a five-year low in alcohol-related
marine fatalities. Four people died in impaired boating incidents in 2013, compared to seven in 2012 and 2011, 14 in 2010 and 13 in 2009. In spite of the decrease, even one life lost due to alcohol
use on the water is one too many. The OPP is asking the public to call
9-1-1 if they know or suspect that someone is operating a vessel while
impaired. In doing so, you could be saving lives.
Get on board with the OPP
Help Us Catch Impaired Boaters
Safe Boating Awareness Week
PFD or Lifejacket?
What is Cold Water Immersion?
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SOURCE: Ontario Provincial Police
For further information:
Contacts by OPP Region:
Highway Safety Division: Sergeant Kerry Schmidt Phone: (416) 460-4701
Central Region: Sergeant Peter Leon Phone: (705) 330-3738
East Region: Constable Peter Robertson Phone: (613) 360-0166
Northwest Region: Sergeant Shelley Garr Phone: (807) 473-2734
North East Region: Sergeant Carolle Dionne Phone: (705) 845-2738
West Region: A/Sergeant Chrystal Jones Phone: (519) 652-4156