A Pocket Guide to Cold Water Survival, 2012 Edition (KB946E) (eBook)

Published Date

December 2012

A Pocket Guide to Cold Water Survival, 2012 Edition (KB946E) (eBook)

(Excludes any applicable taxes)

This publication is a guide to cold water survival.

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This publication is a guide to cold water survival. It begins by exploring cold water hazards and their effects before going on to look at:


  • The survival phase: in survival craft or in cold water
  • rescue guidance for those engaged in search and rescue
  • medical advice and guidance.

1. Introduction

2. Cold water hazards and their effects: knowledge that can improve survival chances

3. Actions prior to abandoning the ship

4. The survival phase: in a survival craft

5. The survival phase: in the water

6. The rescue phase: guidance for those engaged in search and rescue

7. Treatment of people recovered from cold water

8. Treatment of people recovered from survival craft

9. The apparently dead

10. Summing up

This guidance is intended primarily for seafarers. It provides information which will help you if you are unlucky enough to fall into cold water, or have to enter it in an emergency, or have to use survival craft in cold conditions. It also provides information which will help seafarers, trained as first-aid providers, to treat those rescued from cold conditions.


This guide briefly examines the hazards of exposure to the cold that may endanger life, and provides advice based on the latest medical and scientific opinion on how to prevent or minimize those dangers. It is a sad fact that people continue to die at sea through a lack of this knowledge. Knowing what is likely to happen if you are exposed to cold water is a survival aid in itself. A thorough understanding of the information contained in this booklet may someday save your life – or someone else’s.


It is most important to realize that you are not helpless to affect your own survival in cold water. Understanding your body’s response and simple self-help techniques can extend your survival time, particularly if you are wearing a lifejacket. You can make a difference; this guide is intended to show you how.


The guidance is laid out as follows:


  • • an explanation of cold water hazards and their effects


followed by sections on:


  • • actions to be taken prior to abandoning your ship that will improve your chances of survival
  • • actions to be taken during the survival phase, whether in survival craft or in the water
  • the rescue phase
  • treatment of people recovered from cold water or from survival craft in cold conditions
  • treatment of the apparently dead.

As a specialized agency of the United Nations, IMO is the global standard-setting authority for the safety, security and environmental performance of international shipping. Its main role is to create a regulatory framework for the shipping industry that is fair and effective, universally adopted and universally implemented.

In other words, its role is to create a level playing-field so that ship operators cannot address their financial issues by simply cutting corners and compromising on safety, security and environmental performance. This approach also encourages innovation and efficiency.

Shipping is a truly international industry, and it can only operate effectively if the regulations and standards are themselves agreed, adopted and implemented on an international basis. And IMO is the forum at which this process takes place.

Title: A Pocket Guide to Cold Water Survival, 2012 Edition (KB946E) (eBook)
Number of Pages: 32
Product Code: MM1023EA
ISBN: ISBN 13: 9789280115659, ISBN 10: 9280115650
Published Date: December 2012
Author: IMO

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