In a third incident today, a 38-year-old German woman nearly drowned in the sea at Playa La Arena, Santiago del Teide. The incident occurred just after 4.30pm when emergency services were called out with reports that lifeguards had pulled her out of the water and were trying to resuscitate her. Ambulance and helicopter paramedics stabilized her at the scene and then transferred her by helicopter to Candelaria hospital where her situation is said to be serious.

As I said HERE and HERE only this afternoon, Tenerife’s waters are cold and can cause cold water shock. This 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. And so, regardless of the time of year, even in high summer, Tenerife’s waters are technically cold. Bathers can get into difficulties within five minutes.

This is “winter” however, and seas can be rough and even colder than usual. 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 also see THIS page on how to stay safe in Tenerife’s waters.

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