Safe rafting. Tips from professionals.
Do you want to have a rafting trip? Rafting is something new or already known for you? Anyway, we can say that participation in a good rafting is a great pleasure. Believe us, the rafting on the river with rapids is entertainment not only for crazy adventurers and athletes. Today rafting has become the mainstream in the industry of outdoor activities, and, jokes aside, is suitable for almost everyone, from children to elderly. But before you go on rafting, you should take a few simple steps to ensure the impressions will be good and you will remember the positive results of the time spent on the rafting for many years.
Simple safety rules on rafting
When you order rafting do not be lazy to ask questions. How long does the company organize rafting? Who will be the guide on your rafting, what is experience of the company guides, what trainings did they take, what certificates confirm this? Is there work permission? What equipment will you get? These questions will help to understand the professionalism of the company, and working with professionals guarantees that the rules written below will be observed, your safety depends on it.
ALWAYS WEAR A LIFE JACKET.
The fact that you just put on a life jacket does not guarantee that your life is safe. Remember! The life jacket should fit snugly to the body, all lines must be tightened and the fasteners must be caught. The whole trick here is that the life jacket should be dressed freely for breathing, but if you raise your hands up, it could not be removed through the head. Properly worn life jacket is a foundation of safety.
SAFETY AND COMFORT. DO NOT REMOVE PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT.
Always wear a helmet; your rafting experience and the complexity of the one you are going do not matter in this case. You can get a knock on the head with a paddle even on almost still water. If you wear helmet you do not even feel it, without the helmet the knock can lead to a serious injury.
BE SURE THAT YOU HAVE CHOSEN THE RIGHT CLOTHING FOR A DAY.
For example, in spring the water in the river is cold, and even if the weather is warm, you should wear a neoprene suit and specialized shoes (diving shoes or a neoprene sock with extra shoes), this will help you not to get cold and enjoy the rafting without thinking that you can get wet. You can even swim in a neoprene suit, it won’t be cold!
HOLD A PADDLE CORRECTLY!
At first glance, proper holding of paddle is such a trifle, but in fact, it is one of the most important aspects of safety.
STAY IN THE BOAT!
It seems that it could not have been otherwise, but in fact different accidents happen. You always have a chance to fall out of the raft. Sometimes, especially in difficult routes, the raft stumbles upon stones and if it is very strong push, there is a chance to slip out of the boat. If you fell out of the boat, the most important thing to do is not to panic! Calmly find the boat with your eyes. Usually slipping out of the boat you appear next to it. Try to grab the strapping of the raft or the handling paddle, so as not to swim far away. If you are far away from the boat, then you should act according to circumstances: swim to the boat or swim shoreward, do not forget that there are two choices. And the most important thing is not to panic; if you are panic you can’t make right choices. In any case, the guide tells you about all variants of behavior before the rafting.
LEARN HOW TO SWIM CORRECTLY
For rafting on the river, regardless of whether you fell or just jumped into the water for fun, there are two techniques. The first “passive” is used for downstream rafting. You lie on your back, your nose and toes are upward, your face is toward moving, your legs are joined and in front of you, your knees are slightly bent. This is a safe position. In case of a stone, you will push off of it with your feet and absorb the impact. Keep your hands as high as possible to the surface, hit the tailbone and hidden rocks is very unpleasant and dangerous to health. The second position is called “active”, everything is simple, turning over on your stomach and swim to where you want, as soon as possible. Swim until you get out of the river, do not stay in the water. Once again, the guide should give you the necessary instructions.
If you decide to swim to shore, swim until you get it. Never get up in streaming water.
REMEMBER COMMANDS THAT WILL GIVE YOUR GUIDE
Listen carefully and remember the commands that your guide will give you on the rafting and what you should do after hearing these commands. Practice ashore. These commands are few. During simple routes guides usually use “Forward”, “Back”, “Stop” and “Hold tight.” During difficult routes guides added such commands as “Left forward”, the command to the left side automatically means that the right should start paddle in the opposite direction, “Left back”, automatically means “Right forward”, “Everyone to the boat”, when you have to seat inside the boat leaving your hand on the “T” shaped part, grab the rope along the side with your free hand. Listen carefully to the guide. Execute his commands, and do not be overconfident. In this case, the safety and impression from rafting will be on top!
In any situation, keep calm, panic is a loss of time and effort.
Listen carefully to your guide during instruction and rafting.
Try to concentrate during the instruction and pay close attention to the guide, who will show and tell you how to act in different situations, if you have questions, feel free to ask them. During rafting the guide will also give you commands, their accurate following is the key to an interesting, but safe rafting.