SEATTLE -- Whether you’re planning to hit the water or hit the trail, the key to making memories this Memorial Day weekend is preparation.
“You've got about one minute to get control of your breathing. You have about 10 minutes until you`re muscles start failing and then you have about one hour before hypothermia sets" in, says Deputy Benjamin Callahan with the King County Sheriff’s Office.
If you’re on the water, remember it is cold! And having life jackets on board means nothing if you are not wearing it. And that goes for the whole family.
A "seemingly strong swimmer who falls into the river can lose use of their muscles very, very quickly and swift water environments are very, very dangerous,” says Callahan.
Danger can also be found along hiking and biking trails. Just last week, a mountain lion attacked two bikers on a trail east of Seattle, killing one and severely injuring the other.
While an attack like this is very rare, Captain Alan Myers with the Department of Fish and Wildlife, says bear spray or some form of mace is key.
“They all work just the same if they have pepper spray substance in it, that goes about making sure any attacker is going to have a hard time seeing and breathing. If you have kids and you see a cougar, pick up your kid right away, keep them with you. Make a lot of noise, scream and holler, don’t let your kid run off, get away from you, or separate. You want to be right there with them,” says Myers.
And that brings us to your location. Knowing how to track it and how to communicate it, so first responders can find you. Myers says a beacon or GPS locator device can really come in handy; similar to the equipment used by hikers in avalanche territory.