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How long does it take to drown?

Discussion in 'Basic Scuba Discussions' started by CAPTAIN SINBAD, Jun 24, 2013.

  1. Basking Ridge Diver

    Basking Ridge Diver Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: New Jersey
    1,898
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    Just an aside - When I was young - a cousin of mine was pushed into a shallow pool at a party when he was 18yo. He was a quadriplegic when they pulled him out and lived that way a long time - but he told me later - after the initial fear of dying went away - he said it was very peaceful and serene and he enjoyed laying on the bottom of the pool. He said noises were muffled and a calm came over him. He could look up from the pool and see faces but obviously could not move himself at that point.
    Makes me think of diving - peaceful and quiet most of the time... I will never forget Micheal and I never hesitated to learn to dive after that... Not the way I want to go but there are a lot worse things that could happen in my opinion.
     
  2. Byrdie

    Byrdie Divemaster

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: NJ
    57
    11
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    Sebastian Junger describes the drowning process in scary detail in the book The Perfect Storm as was the likely outcome of the crew of the Andrea Gail. I read it probably 15 years ago and still recall how vivid the description-including the timing-was.
     
  3. Foxfish

    Foxfish Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Perth, Australia
    717
    117
    0
    Drowning after a 'shallow water blackout' is a constant concern for freedivers. Initially you become semi conscious and during this time the bodies reflexes prevent water being inhaled. This is accompanied by convulsions often called 'a samba'. The next phase is to become totally unconscious. At that time the throat and esophagus relax and water can enter the lungs. My guess is this would take about 30 seconds to a minute. After that, it depends how long the oxygen in your brain takes to fall below the limit needed to sustain life. As mentioned there are a lot of variables. Apparently this fellow was revived after 30 minutes underwater.

    15-Year-Old Revived After Being Under Water for 30 Minutes - ABC News
     

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