(NORTHERN BRUCE PENINSULA, ON) - Grey Bruce OPP are concerned over the number of incidents that have been occurring where people are going out on the water not prepared and are using poor judgement. The water of Lake Huron and Georgian Bay is only 3 degrees Celsius.
At that temperature the human body will quickly experience medical distress. Hypothermia is a medical emergency that occurs when your body loses heat faster than it can produce heat, causing a dangerously low body temperature. When your body temperature drops, your heart, nervous system and other organs can't work normally. Someone with hypothermia usually isn't aware of his or her condition because the symptoms often begin gradually. Also, the confused thinking associated with hypothermia prevents self-awareness.
The following is examples of calls that officers have responded to over the past month.
On May 19, 2019 at 2:36 p.m. Grey Bruce OPP responded to a 33-year-old male who had fallen in the water out of a canoe on Lake Huron, Northern Bruce Peninsula. The male was wearing a wetsuit and life jacket but after being in the water for 20-30 minutes he experienced symptoms of hypothermia. The male was transported by ambulance to the hospital for medical attention due cold water exposure.
Also, on May 19, 2019 at 11:34 p.m. Grey Bruce OPP were dispatched to boating incident where 2 males, 22 and 19 years of age, went out in a 14 foot aluminum boat at 10:30 p.m. and in poor weather conditions. The two males were rescued by Canadian Coast Guard from Bonnet Island out from Simpson Avenue, Northern Bruce Peninsula. The males became stuck on the island after the boat struck ground and sunk. Both males were transported by ambulance to the hospital with symptoms of hypothermia.
It is responsibility of everyone that ventures out on the water to be prepared for what could happen. Make your decisions, to go or not to go, on not just the current weather and water conditions but look at the forecast for the time you plan to be away.
Wear a Personal Floatation Device, Make a Plan and leave it with someone and Safety Above All.