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Boaters Should Take Extra Winter Precautions

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For all you boaters out there, the winter months could pose additional safety concerns. The Missouri State Water Patrol says lower temperatures and less daylight mean boaters have more things to be aware of than in the summer months. KSMU’s Ryan Welch has this report on how to stay safe while on the water during the winter.

The sun setting earlier now results in rapidly dropping air temperatures. The Water Patrol says boaters should plan to return from their trips before the sun sets to avoid being stranded after dark.

Also, lifejackets should be worn at all times, as the water is so much colder than in summer. If a person does fall in the water, the shock of the cold water to the body, and the potential for hypothermia, make performing a basic task like putting a life jacket on near impossible.

If you do get wet, it’s important to get out of the water and into dry clothes as quickly as possible. If dry clothes aren’t available, leave the wet ones on, because even wet clothes will trap some body heat.

A warm drink can be given to someone suffering from hypothermia, as long as the person is conscious. While caffeine and alcohol should be avoided, drinks with sugars for quick energy are preferable.

For boaters out hunting or fishing, it’s important to remember not to overload your boat.

For KSMU News, I’m Ryan Welch.

Tag: Boaters should watch the weather, never go boating alone, and always make sure someone has your boating plan so help can be reached if you don’t return at your scheduled time.