How to be safe around unsupervised waters this summer

Never underestimate the forceful power of currents. A swimmer in open water who underestimates the power of currents can be swept away instantly. The risk of water-related injuries or death when in the water is far greater than perceived.

Here are some very helpful tips to remember when you are out near open water currents this summer. 

  • Open water is very different than swimming in a pool – distance is deceiving, and you often have to contend with cold water, waves, currents, drop offs, sandbars, water visibility, undertows, and underwater obstacles, as well as motorcrafts.
  • River currents, especially when concentrated around rocks, bridge pilings, and in hydraulics at the base of dams, have enormous power and can easily trap even strong swimmers.
  • If you become caught in a river current or fast moving water, roll onto your back and go downstream feet first to avoid hitting obstacles head first. When you are out of the strongest part of the current, swim straight toward shore.
  • If your boat has overturned, hang on to the upstream end of the boat.
  • Always swim with a buddy and check the weather conditions before venturing into the water.
  • Be aware of currents, water temperature, and depth when swimming in open water.
  • Wind and waves frequently come up suddenly, posing a major threat for swimmers and boaters far from sheltered waters in lakes and on the ocean. Advance verification and ongoing observation of weather conditions is essential.
  • Obey signs and signals (such as flags) posted on the beach, which indicate whether the water is safe to enter. 

Rapid water currents have the crippling power to threaten severe spinal cord injuries and in the field of personal injury law, few cases are more devastating than those that involve a spinal cord injury. These injuries can have short- or long-term effects in terms of mobility and quality of life. The dedicated team of lawyers at Harris law has the experience to get you the results you deserve after a spinal cord injury.

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