Fishing accidents involving people falling into the water can happen anywhere. Depending on the circumstances, would-be rescuers could also be at risk of falling into the water and suffering a personal injury themselves. Assessing risks and developing solid action plans quickly before selecting the most appropriate rescue techniques is elementary to prevent further accidental injuries by slipping or being dragged into the water.
This is where reach-throw-go comes in. Not so much a technique as a list of techniques in successive order of risk (minimal to maximal), this should actually read: talk-reach-wade-throw-techno-helo-row-go.
- Talk entails talking to victims and directing them to either swim to safety or remain in a relatively safe place in the water until rescue teams arrive.
- Reach involves extending branches, pike poles, ladders or other suitable ‘arm-extenders’ towards the victim. This technique should be executed in a crouching or lying-down position to prevent an injury by slipping or being pulled into the water.
- Throw utilises ropes or buoyant objects like throw bags, life savers and so on when a near-drowning victim is out of reach but within a distance close enough for accurate throws.
- Wade is used in shallow, safe to wade waters if throw techniques are ineffective (when dealing with unconscious victims, for example) or not available.
- Techno is primarily used in swift water accidents and involves use of technical rope systems. Comparatively complicated and slower to implement than simpler techniques, techno does offer better safety margins.
- Helo uses rescue helicopters with crews trained in water rescue.
- Row is use of any boat, human or engine powered, for a rescue operation. When using smaller boats, it is important not to try and pull victims on board, as they may panic and capsize the boat, potentially resulting in rescuers suffering injuries by falling into the water.
- Go involves rescue swimmers entering the water. When swimmers enter the water to assist disabled, unconscious or panicky victims in near-drowning accidents, this is referred to as ‘Tow’.
Due to the high risk of potential injuries to rescuers, the latter four options (and tow) should only be carried out by trained rescue personnel.
If you suffered a fishing related injury, whether by slips, trips and falls; near-drowning or any other accident while fishing, or were injured while rescuing someone, you may be entitled to personal injury compensation. Get expert help from Accident Advice Helpline. To discuss your claim with a member of our expert team dial 0800 689 0500 now.
Date Published: September 30, 2014
Author: Accident Advice