Kayakers at Safety Symposium Learn from Overnight Rescue - WBAY

Kayakers at Safety Symposium Learn from Overnight Rescue

As popular as kayaking is in Wisconsin, it comes with certain risks and dangers.

Friday and through the weekend in Door County, some kayakers are attending a symposium to learn how to stay safe on the water.

They're talking about the crucial steps the missing kayakers took to stay alive.

As the woman and two boys drifted farther and farther away from shore, experts say they made several right decisions that allowed rescuers to find them early Friday morning.

"Those folks did a great job staying with their boats so they can be seen from the air, number one. And number two, that's flotation and they kept their personal flotation devices on," said certified kayak instructor Tim Pflieger.

Pflieger owns a different boat rental company in Door County than the one in which the woman rented.

He says even in the middle of summer, water temperatures are much cooler than the air temperature and they drop at night. And kayakers also face danger when the winds and waves suddenly kick up.

Coincidently, 150 kayakers from all over the midwest are in Door County this weekend to learn how to mitigate a situation like the one that happened Thursday.

Udo Schmeling, of Chicago, is participating in the symposium. He says he now knows what to do if he were ever in the same situation, which is exactly what the woman and boys did.

"Stay calm and if you're with another person or a group of people, all of you stay together, because it's obviously a lot easier to find a group of people than a bunch of individuals," he said.

Pflieger offers another piece of advice.

"It's a great idea to carry a cell phone this day of technology and put it in a waterproof container," he said.

He says it will prove as a lifeline if and when winds and waves ruin an afternoon of kayaking.

For more information on the symposium, click here.

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