symbol for rip currents

Cold Water

The water may look inviting, but it is cold – even in the summer. If you’re unsuited it means you’re unsuitable for water entry. If you’re planning to go in the water, wear thermal protection. Be prepared by staying warm and afloat.

The Pacific Northwest  ocean water temperature ranges from about 7C to 14 C with an average of 10C. Cold water is known to have the maximum effect at temperatures ranging from 15C to 10C. Cold water shock literally takes your breath away. Cold water can rapidly lead to dysfunction of the extremities and, for many people, cold incapacitation within 10 minutes. Note that becoming caught in a current and pulled into deeper water away from shore can take more than 10 minutes to escape from.

How to be CoastSmart