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You just can't be too careful when out on the trails

Discussion in 'Wilderness & Survival Skills' started by Mannlicher, Jul 31, 2012.

  1. beanbag


    Apr 1, 2009
    In case you had any doubts, it's official, hiking is dangerous..............

    Press Release
    New CDC Study First To Present National Outdoor Recreational Injury Estimates
    Nearly 213,000 treated in emergency departments annually-- more than half of injuries among young people ages 10-24

    For Immediate Release: June 10, 2008

    Contact: CDC Injury Center Media Relations, (770) 488-4902

    Almost 213,000 people were treated each year in emergency departments for outdoor recreational injuries from 2004 to 2005, according to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) study in the journal Wilderness and Environmental Medicine. Of those injured, about 109,000 (51.5 percent) were young people between the ages of 10 and 24.

    For both men and women of all ages, the most common injuries were fractures (27.4 percent) and sprains (23.9 percent). Of these, most injuries were to the arms or legs (52 percent) or to the head or neck (23.3 percent). Overall, 6.5 percent of outdoor injuries treated were diagnosed as traumatic brain injury (TBI).

    Researchers found that snowboarding (25.5 percent), sledding (10.8 percent), and hiking (6.3 percent) were associated with the highest percentage of injuries requiring emergency department visits.

    “Participation in outdoor recreation is increasingly popular in the United States,” said Arlene Greenspan, Dr. PH and co-author of the study. “The good news is that there are ways to help stay safe while having healthy fun outdoors. For example, by wearing the appropriate helmet for snowboarding, snowmobiling, sledding and rock climbing, you can reduce your risk of having a head injury, which could become a traumatic brain injury. Helmets are one piece of equipment that can have a critical, positive impact.”

    The study points out that wilderness injury prevention begins with planning, preparation, and problem anticipation. Outdoor adventurers can help prevent injuries by:

    -Maintaining their levels of fitness, knowing their skill levels and experience, and not exceeding their limits.
    -Checking and maintaining their equipment and replacing if needed.
    -Carrying a first-aid kit (and, if appropriate for the situation, a two-way communication device.)
    -Alerting others about where they are going.

    “We encourage people of all ages to enjoy recreational activities to stay healthy and fit,” said Ileana Arias, Ph.D., director of the CDC National Center for Injury Prevention and Control. “With proper planning and preparation, you can anticipate potential problems and reduce possible injuries and long-term consequences.”
  2. Rick Marchand

    Rick Marchand Donkey on the Edge Moderator Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Jan 6, 2005
    Good post, Beanbag. Too bad about those two.
  3. Thomas Linton

    Thomas Linton

    Jun 16, 2003
    I have seen three statistical studies of death in the wilderness. One from New Hampshire SAR cases. One from Arizona. One from "western" U.S. Parks. They all recorded that falls, drowning, and heart attacks each accounted for about 1/4 of deaths. All other causes accounted for the remaining 1/4.
  4. lambertiana

    lambertiana Gold Member Gold Member

    Jul 7, 2000
  5. Codger_64

    Codger_64 Moderator Moderator

    Oct 8, 2004
    One river that I have frequented all my life, the Spring River which originates in Mammoth Springs Missouri, seems to claim three to five lives every year recently. The hydrology of the river does change, but the most common causes are alcohol consumption and entrapment in rocks below rapids and falls. Most of the incidents I would say were subclassifications of complacency. People treat the river like an amusement park, forgetting that it was not designed by engineers for user safety. This is mild class I-II whitewater fed yearround by cold water springs. It attracts huge crowds of young people on most warm weather holidays, the majority of which have no experience with whitewater safety or rescue. If I had my way, every river user would attend a brief orientation program on whitewater safety before they could embark on the river. It sounds silly since this is such an easy and fun river to float, not remote at all. But that adds to the complacency.

  6. lmalterna

    lmalterna Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 12, 2002
    Wow!! Good recipe for multiple disasters there. kids 15-25 always seem to think they are bulletproof. Alcohol and water are not a good mix.

    I see stupid stuff, usually around rock drop offs on mountains and folks jumping into rivers from a height. My biggest risks are probably foot entrapment and breaking an ankle in rock scrambles.

  7. beanbag


    Apr 1, 2009
    There is no doubt about it water and alcohol is a recipe for disaster.

    My cousin is the Search and Rescue Coordinator for the State of Oregon Office of Emergency Management. He told me that about 75% of all SAR missions in Oregon involve water (usually rivers) and the majority of those are alcohol related.

    He also said that, unfortunately, the vast majority of those missions usually end up as recovery efforts.
  8. Codger_64

    Codger_64 Moderator Moderator

    Oct 8, 2004
    I note that in the video, no PFDs are seen. In the above instance, no alcohol was involved. But would she have submerged in 3' of water if she had worn a PFD? Had she known not to try to stand in swift water among boulders?
  9. lmalterna

    lmalterna Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 12, 2002
    I have done a couple of raft trips- one just on the NC/TN line- Little Pidgeon I beleive it was? Also one in the Grand Canyon. Foot entrapment was discussed at length as one of the number one killers as well as hydrofoils- how to recognize them and how to try to get out of them. That being said, I think my one instinct would be to try to stand- something I hope I can overcome.
    I have waded our James River many times for small mouth and I am very careful of my footing and aware of hole you can go from 24" of water that is lazy and step into a channel that is 6' and swift. Things like that catch people off guard and they are immediately fighting for life.
    I am also strict on PFD's- we had a 22' Hurricane on the lake for a time and my kids bucked on the vests as they both swam like fish. My reply was "How well do you swim if you are unconcious?"
    We all die but to die over something that can easily be prevented is just foolish. Any activity has risk but risk can be measured and you can still enjoy the activity.
  10. billym


    Jan 8, 2006

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