Just three days ago there were two drownings in north Tenerife waters (link), and now sadly today there is another. A woman’s body was recovered by GES search and rescue helicopter from the water off the coast of Punta de la Tablada in Buenavista del Norte just before 1pm. The woman was already dead by the time rescue services were called out with reports that a body was floating in the sea, and there was nothing that could be done for her. She was taken to the helipad at the Los Silos pools where the judicial authorities received her body.

Once again I’ll say, it’s summer, and so of course there will be more people than ever in the sea here over the next few months. Even at this time of year, however, it’s not always obvious quite how cold the waters can be here. Cold water shock can affect people even with water temperature of up to 25º, it’s not just freezing water that is dangerous, and the water around the Canaries’ doesn’t get above 24°C (75°F) even in August. Technically, therefore, it’s always “cold”, and bathers can get into difficulties within five minutes.

Just to be specific about symptoms, normal body temperature is 98.6º; shivering begins when the body temperature lowers to approximately 96.5º; amnesia and coordination problems begin to set in at approximately 94º, unconsciousness at 86º, and death, normally from cardiac arrest, at approximately 79º … and 79º is 4º above our normal high season water temperatures! Please read my page HERE for information on all this and for recommendations on how to stay safe in waters around Tenerife.

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