Cold Water Immersion Kills
Don't ever think that boating activities won't expose you to the risk of hypothermia. Wear rain gear when it rains. A windbreaker over a fleece jacket is very effective to protect against the wind. Hypothermia can occur on what begins as a warm, sunny day. In remote areas, carry matches and go ashore if you need to build a fire. Also carry an extra jacket, hat, and blankets. Remember that, as a responsible operator, you should tell your passengers what to bring along for the outing.
Proper response to accidents results from good training and common sense. If an injury is minor, treat it immediately. If an injury is major, make the victim as comfortable and safe as possible until medical personnel arrive, assuming you have a way to call for help.
Cold water immersion kills in several ways. The colder the water, the greater the chance of death. In Canada, water that is 15° Celsius or below is considered cold water. However, the initial reaction to cold water immersion can occur in water as warm as 25° Celsius. By understanding how your body reacts to cold water, you can prepare for and be better able to respond appropriately, thus increasing your chance of survival.