For millions of college students, spring break is the highlight of their
school year and perhaps of their entire youth. It is a time to forget
their academic studies and the other stressors of college life, and spend
a week simply relaxing and having fun in the sun with other people their
own age. This winter has been one of the coldest in history throughout
most of the United States, which makes spending a week in early spring
at the beach all the more appealing. There is no doubt that this March
and April will see countless college students flock to the beaches of
Florida, Texas, California, Mexico, and elsewhere.
But with great fun comes great risk, and every year we hear
news stories about tragic accidents occurring during spring break shenanigans. Alcohol
poisoning and drug overdoses are relatively common in spring break environments,
as are sexual assaults. Perhaps most frightening of all though, is that
spring breakers are at high risk of drowning. Water (especially ocean
water), alcohol, inexperienced swimmers, lack of lifeguards, and a general
carefree atmosphere can be a lethal combination for young people who are
just trying to enjoy their vacation.
How to Stay Safe and Avoid Drowning While on Spring Break
Here are some practical tips that can help you and your friends avoid tragedy
during this spring break season:
1. Never dive into unknown waters: The water may be shallower than you think, or there may be dangerous objects
onto which you could land, so you should always investigate the water
first before diving.
2. Avoid rip currents, whirlpools, and undertows: When swimming in ocean water with breaking waves, be extra careful not
to get caught and carried under. If you do get caught, stay calm and swim
parallel to the shore to get out of the current.
3. Swim only in designated areas: These areas will be clearly marked and will have lifeguards on duty.
4. Never swim alone: Make sure you have friends swimming with you at all times, so that someone
will notice if anything happens to you.
5. Always swim sober: This is probably the most important tip of all. If you are intoxicated,
you should not swim, period. Drunkenness is the number one factor that leads to
drownings during spring break. If you are responsible about separating your drinking
from your swimming, you may save your own life.
6. Don’t do anything you don’t want to do: Never let anyone talk you into doing something that you think is a bad
idea. Only you know what your limits are, and if something seems dangerous
to you, it probably is.
What to Do if Your Son or Daughter Is Involved in a Drowning Accident
If your son or daughter has died in a drowning accident, you should contact
a personal injury attorney immediately. An attorney can review the facts
of your case and determine whether you have a viable claim. If so, they
can help you seek the compensation you deserve.