Cold Water Surprise

The first reaction of a surprised paddler after a capsize in cold water can be sudden inhalation of water caused by the uncontrollable gasp reflex. (aka Sudden Drowning)

Wearing a life jacket can improve your chances of keeping your head above water during the capsize thereby saving your life.

If you survive the gasp reflex, depending on water temperature, your arms and legs will likely become useless in less than 15 minutes. (aka Unable To Stay Afloat)

Wearing a life jacket will keep you afloat after your arms and legs stop working thereby extending your chances of rescue.

Most victims of cold water capsizes die of drowning, not hypothermia. Many drowning victims are mere FEET from shore when they drown. Two thirds of drowning victims are good swimmers.

When your arms stop working due to cold water and you are NOT wearing a life jacket, you are deadAnd, SURPRISE - it may happen much quicker than you think.

Getting out of the water and back into your kayak can save your life.  
So, how fast can you get back into your kayak? 30 seconds?  
5 minutes?  10 minutes?  15 minutes?  
Don't know how long? 
Slow self rescue could be the cause of your death in cold water.
Self Rescue practice and experience can save your life.

Don' believe what I write? Watch the Videos. 

1-10-1 Principle - Watch this video!

Hypothermia Boot Camp - Watch this video!

Chilling Facts about Cold Water - Read it!

Current Water Temperatures (NODC)