Drowning may not look like you think
If you think drowning involves someone screaming, gasping, and waving for help as commonly seen on TV—think again. The visible images many people associate with drowning do not have much in common with what real drowning looks like, according to Navy/Coast Guard veteran, Mario Vittone. That’s because of an automated pattern of responses that appears to be hard-wired into humans called the Instinctive Drowning Response. This pattern emerges whenever someone feels like they are suffocating in water. It is the person’s final attempts to avoid actual or perceived suffocation in water before sinking.
Frank Pia, Ph.D., also a lifeguard, was the first to describe the Instinctive Drowning Response. He explains that it may not be obvious that the drowning person is in distress. In fact, the lack of visible panic with their movements is because they are incapable of making other gestures or calling for help at this point. Drowning is often a deceptively quiet event. The following information describes why drowning may not look like you think:
The information provided in this article is intended for general informational purposes only and should not be considered as all encompassing, or suitable for all situations, conditions, and environments. Please contact us or your attorney if you have any questions.