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Early spring boating safety tips

Boaters are already hitting the open and what can be dangerous waters in the area. The United States Coast Guard (USCG) in Sturgeon Bay reminds boat owners and operators to check their watercraft and a safety checklist to prevent problems on Lake Michigan and the bay. USCG Petty Officer Andrew Kappler, a 2nd Class Boatswain Mate, says one of the main concerns in the early Spring is the low water temperatures that can cause hypothermia if anyone is in the water for any significant time. He recommends filing a float plan with a friend using the Coast Guard mobile app.



Kappler notes that if you should ever fall in the water with a life preserver on, the best way to keep your core body temperature up is by assuming the HELP position (heat escape lessening position). That position is where you pull your knees up to your chest, wrap your hands around your knees, and squeeze your knees like you are in a ball. Kappler notes that the 1-10-1 rule in cold water is that you have one minute of controllable breathing, ten minutes of meaningful movement, and one hour before losing consciousness. You can find more information on water safety tips here.

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