College student Joe Pedrotti died from a phenomenon known as “shallow water blackout” while he was on Spring Break with his friends in Panama City, Florida.
Joe and his friends were at the pool, and Joe bet his friends that he could swim around the pool’s island with one breath. The water in the pool was only four feet deep and Joe was known as a good swimmer, but after a minute Joe’s friends spotted him face-down and unconscious.
Joe’s mother Angi Pedrotti said his friends got him out of the water, started performing CPR, and called an ambulance.
Joe’s obituary said he died of “shallow water blackout” which happens when a person holds their breath for an extended period, pushing beyond the breaking point.
Dr. Tom Griffiths explained how “shallow water blackout” occurs.
What happens is they use up so much oxygen, that they don’t have sufficient oxygen in their bloodstream to keep them conscious, and they blackout underwater.
They literally faint underwater.
As summer approaches, experts are warning that “shallow water blackout” is different than drowning, which happens from a lack of swimming skills.
Dr. Griffiths said it’s strong swimmers who succumb to “shallow water blackout.”
The major difference here is, the people that succumb to “shallow water blackout” are not novice swimmers, it’s superior swimming skill and breath-holding ability, and that drive to push themselves beyond their limits.
Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps has warned people about “shallow water blackout” in recent PSAs.
Experts also say you should never compete in those underwater competitions to see who could hold their breath the longest, and you should never hyperventilate before an underwater swim.
Watch the GMA report below:
Our deepest condolences goes to Joe Pedrotti’s family and friends.
Please keep the experts tips in mind and keep your family safe at the pool.