ABSTRACT

Olejniczak, R.; Kowalewska-Kalkowska, H., and Zalewski, T., 2020. Analysis of the effectiveness of the rescue operation with use of different motorboat units in the Baltic coast conditions. In: Malvárez, G. and Navas, F. (eds.), Global Coastal Issues of 2020. Journal of Coastal Research, Special Issue No. 95, pp. 905–909. Coconut Creek (Florida), ISSN 0749-0208.

The effectiveness of aid provided to drowning people depends on numerous anthropogenic and environmental variables. Anthropogenic variables include rescue team experience level and the technical equipment used. Natural determinants include hydrological and meteorological conditions. As far as the Baltic Sea is concerned, hydrological and meteorological conditions sometimes change very rapidly, which can have a crucial influence on the quality of rescue operations. Due to the fact that environmental determinants affect the quality of water rescue operations, the idea was to examine their influence on the time of reaching a casualty. The aim of the study was to analyze the effectiveness of the simulated rescue operations that took place in 2019 on the southern coast of the Baltic Sea at the beach resort in Międzyzdroje. Three different motorboat units were used in the operation. The analysis needed to choose the right unit was based on the rescue procedure in sea waters using three most frequently applied motorboat units on the Baltic coast. During the research, the times of reaching particular strategic places by motorboats were measured during the rescue operation. The research showed that the level of a lifeguard's experience has an influence on the time of reaching a casualty. Furthermore, the season, in which the rescue operations take place may lengthen or shorten the time needed to reach a casualty. The choice of a motorboat unit, depending on weather conditions, can have a direct influence on life-saving effectiveness. What is more, the research highlighted the need to monitor the infrastructure that surrounds the bathing areas. It is due to the fact that a smooth discharge of a rescue unit and an unobstructed access to the area is of paramount and crucial importance on speed of reaching a casualty.

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