Marine fishing has always been one of the most dangerous jobs because man cannot control the natural environment. With the increase in the number of hurricanes, commercial fisherman and people who fish for fun need to use more caution. Even the death of the famous "Crocodile Man," who was struck dead by a stingray while filming a documentary, has drawn attention to the unpredictability of the ocean and its inhabitants.
According to experts, the rate of fatality for fisherman in the United Kingdom is 20 times more than works in other industries such as manufacturing. American research shows commercial fisherman are seven times more likely to die than if they work in another industry.
Some of the risks involved in fishing involve the following:
Poor weather conditions
Fishing can be extremely dangerous during hurricanes. Experts say hurricanes will likely increase due to global warming since hurricanes are fueled by warmer water. Heavy fog, sudden gales and gusts of wind can cause boat accidents. Fishermen are often injured when their boat capsizes or collides. When fishing at sea, choose a more buoyant fishing boat that is designed to increase the chance of survival. Also, make sure to carry a spare engine and sailing rig in case you are without power.
Fire, shoddy boat construction
Other risk factors include a fire on board. If you are on a boat carrying extra fuel, you are at higher risk for a major accident. Also, don't get on a fishing boat that is not up to safety standards. Make sure the boat is being used for it intended purpose and in it's intended environment. Don't take a boat meant for a small lake into the ocean. Finally, some countries are being proactive about protecting fisherman. In India, people use a cyclone warning system, which is connected to a network of coastal radars, and receivers, which give 48 hours notice. When a cyclone is detected, the siren is sounded and radio warnings are broadcast. In Senegal, a West African country, fishermen's lives are put at risk when they cross the surf and enter sand-barred estuaries. The Ministry of Fishery and Marine Transport in Senegal issued a code of conduct for fishermen. Fishermen need to have basic equipment on their boats including a spare outboard engine.
In New Zealand, every one in five people who drown are commercial fisherman. They have a voluntary coastguard federation that helps channel calls for help to the New Zealand police where sea-borne rescue units help protect the coastal zone.