So, you’re paddling your kayak, or fishing from it in warm, fresh water, and you may think to yourself that nothing could happen to you if for some reason you’d have to ‘take a swim’ because you lost balance and fell overboard… Well, you’re wrong.
We’ve already wrote an article about a variety of dangers that kayak paddlers and anglers are exposed to in different water conditions, and here is some more about this important kayak safety issue:
Officials with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have confirmed that a deadly amoeba, which is commonly found in lakes and rivers is the cause of the recent death of a Florida swimmer –
Health officials in Brevard County, FL, said they believe water infected with the parasite Naegleria fowleri went up the swimmer’s nose while she was swimming in the St. Johns River, east of Orlando.
Once the amoeba enters the brain, it usually causes a fatal infection called primary amebic meningoencephalitis (PAM). Initial signs of PAM include headache, fever, nausea, vomiting, loss of smell or taste and stiff neck.
The disease spreads rapidly, and usually results in death within a few days.
This disease is not contagious.
A similar case has also been reported in Virginia.
Florida state officials issued a health advisory saying the amoeba proliferates in stagnant freshwater lakes, ponds, streams and rivers, when temperatures climb into the 80s. They said people should take safety precautions when swimming, and avoid swallowing pool, lake or river water.
Officials say 32 such infections were reported in the US between 2001 and 2010.
Does anyone need more reasons to look at traditional kayaking’s cherished Eskimo Roll technique as inadequate and hazardous?
Does anyone need more reasons to look at fishing standing on top of a SOT kayak as taking unnecessary risks?
Does anyone need more reasons to understand why SUP boards are not well suited for stand up paddling on flat water?