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Onshore
03-16-2009, 09:22 PM
Here's a follow-up to a earlier thread, "Always stay with the boat"

NFL Players may have died only hours after anchor fouled and boat capsized in Gulf of Mexico per Coast Guard. Sole survivor says punches were thrown and one by one the three missing men took their life jackets off and slipped away. Read more at: http://www.rr.com/sports/sports/article/2020/7163320/NFL_players_may_have_died_hours_after_boat_toppled

Mark Cahill
03-17-2009, 11:04 AM
Never leave the boat, never take off your life jacket.

Also note the one guy that survived found a way to get out of the water, where he surely would have succumbed to hypothermia.

JGH
03-17-2009, 11:48 AM
Stay with the boat. Leave your PFD on. Know the weather forecast before venturing 70 miles offshore.

But besides all that, I've always had the suspicion (perhaps from watching too many CSI or Sopranos episodes) that there is more to the story of how just one of four guys came home from a trip far offshore.

Slappy
03-17-2009, 02:19 PM
I'm sure that hypothermia changes the situation. Cognitive powers and reasoning skills diminish and bad decisions are made by reasonably sane people.

The family said that the guy wouldn't give up, but that doesn't account for hypothermia.

Bob Parsons
03-17-2009, 03:45 PM
As hypothermia sets in, reasoning powers diminish greatly. The person gets chills and feverish, and may actually remove clothes.

SteepBank
03-17-2009, 04:21 PM
I've seen and heard of alot of drownings due to hypothermia but is it just me or is it stilll weird this happend to three out of four individuals? I can see a one person freaking out and possibly pulling of thier only hope of life but that many? It wasnt like there would be no chance of being found (if they all stayed with the boat) even after a couple of days...

billyo
03-17-2009, 06:34 PM
I have some expertise in the subject of hypothermia. One of the ways you lose heat is by conduction. The flow of heat down a temperature gradient. In this case from 98.6 degrees of your body temp down to the 60 degrees of the water temp. The thermal conductivity of water is 30 times that of air and hence the guys in the water lose heat 30 times faster than the guy on the boat even if the air temp and water temp are equal. Body temps of 90-95 degrees are considered "mild hypothermia" and your body does alot of active things to both make and conserve heat in this range (shivering, increased heart rate, shunting blood from your skin to your core, etc). As you cool, temps of 86-90 or "moderate hypothermia" result in a loss of these reflexes, you stop shivering and your heart rate drops, your breathing decreases and your mental status progresses from mild incoordination to severe confusion to lethargy to coma. It's no mistake that the guy who survived was the one who got himself out of the water and onto the hull. It's also not surprising that the guys who died became agitated and combative. It's common for hunters lost in the woods to be found with their clothes off so I guess taking off the life jacket is the same thing. The lesson here is to try to avoid being in the water at all costs, (get on the hull, get on a Buoy, get in your life raft.) If you are in the water you need to have a way to get help asap if the water temps are low. There's no way that the guys in the water would last a couple of days. A couple of hours would be more like it. Accidents happen and there's some "there but for the grace of God go I" in this story but 35 miles offshore in building seas with no epirb or PLB in a 21 foot boat is a disaster waiting to happen. I don't think there's anything suspicious about the rapidity of the decompensation of the people who died or of their confusion and combativeness. That's hypothermia when you're in the water. Any way, it's a catastrophe no matter how it happened.

Captcastafly
03-17-2009, 09:11 PM
billyo,

Your information is spot on.

Very well said.

You about nailed it!

SteepBank
03-18-2009, 09:46 PM
Absolutley! Thanks for that..