Hypothermia Complications Can Be Serious and Fatal

Hypothermia Complications You Need to Know Before You Get on a Boat

Paul Hofmann
Specializes in personal injury, with emphasis on maritime, railroad and construction worker tort claims

It may be summer in New Jersey, but the Central and North Atlantic waters often don’t seem very warm. According to the National Oceanographic Data Center, water temperatures near the cost of Montauk, Atlantic City, Newport, and Boston are typically in the mid-to-low 60s in June, while water temperatures in places like New Haven and Cape May may be a few degrees higher. Of course, as you venture into deeper water farther from the coast, those temperatures may drop significantly and the winds may pick up.

Accordingly, Mariners Need to Know the Potential Complications of Hypothermia

You may have received some training that included how you may develop hypothermia if you fall off your vessel and into the Atlantic water, but do you know the potential complications of hypothermia?

According to the Mayo Clinic, hypothermia may result in:

  • Frostbite, or the freezing of body tissue.
  • Gangrene, or the decay/death of body tissue due to lack of blood flow or frostbite.
  • Chilblains, or damage to the nerves and small blood vessels. This typically happens if the temperature is cold but not below freezing.
  • Trench foot, or damage to the nerves and small blood vessels due to being in the water too long.

These complications can lead to amputations, other serious injuries, and fatalities.

What to Do if You’re Hurt

If you work at sea and you have suffered from hypothermia complications during any month of the year then you may be entitled to compensation under federal law. It is important to know which laws apply to you and how to protect your recovery as soon as possible after you are safely on land.

To learn more, please contact us via this website, and please download our FREE publication, The Legal Rights of Injured Seamen and Other Commercial Mariners, today.