More About Dangers To Kayakers and Kayak Anglers in Warm, Fresh Water

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... 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.

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?


5 Comments

  1. Terry Yakkey

    Good article that makes a lot of sense. I read about flesh eating bacteria, and it just makes sense that if some bug gets from the infested water where they live into your nasal cavities, or your lungs, you could get seriously ill and die.

  2. Rox

    A few years back here in Ct, a young boy died after swimming with friends and family.

    That evening, he fell ill, they rushed him to the hospital and found his brain was under attack by an amoeba.

    They were sure the amoeba entered into his body from a cut he had.
    He passed away in less then 24 hrs.

    Though rare, but still, very scary.

    Be safe, on and off the water.
    Rox

  3. Knucklewalker

    These amoeba have been known for years, but it’s always good to remind yakers about them, and tell those who might not have heard.
    KW

  4. Rox

    Also you must take into consideration, that some of the amoeba infections happen because of an auto immune problem.

    When the immune system is less active than normal, it can become a life-threatening infection.
    The body just can’t fight it.

    On happier note: Tight lines and Paddle Safe all.
    Rox

  5. W kayak

    Indeed, it seems like many people may be immune to this kind of infection.

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