Cold Water Safety Awareness

Drowning rates in the North have been and continue to be alarmingly high when compared to the rest of the country.  The 2015 Canadian Drowning Report prepared by the Drowning Prevention Research Center Canada for the Life Saving Society of Canada cites the following number of drownings per 100,000 population between 2003 and 2012.

Province/ Territory 2003 to 2007 2008 to 2012
Yukon 11.3 11.6
Nunavut 15.2 11.4
Northwest Territories 15.8 7.8
Newfoundland & Labrador 3.9 4.2
Manitoba 1.8 2.3
Saskatchewan 1.5 2.1
British Columbia 2 1.8
Nova Scotia 1.9 1.7
New Brunswick 2.1 1.6
Ontario 1.2 1.3
Quebec 1.2 1.1
Alberta 1.2 0.9
Prince Edward Island 2 0.3


The report categorizes the causes of accidental drownings, but are generally due to risk taking, a lack of understanding of the hazards of cold water and failure to take the appropriate measures to protect oneself.

This one-day package is appropriate awareness training for all northerners, particularly children and people who travel and recreate on the water.

Course Content includes:

  • The effects of cold water on the human body
  • Basic rescue and first aid techniques,
  • Pre-trip planning

This content is delivered through informative presentations, discussion of northern case studies, and the sharing of participants’ personal experiences.
Course Duration: 1 day