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3 common types of rafting injuries

One of the most fun things to do in Alaska is going on a whitewater rafting trip. This recreational activity is often exhilarating and heart-pounding. While it may make for an enjoyable adventure, it can also be dangerous.

Rafting tours may result in serious injuries. Despite safety precautions and regulations, rafting accidents occur. Various environmental factors such as large rocks, drops, strong currents and waves may make for a tumultuous experience. 

1. Sprains and strains

According to a report on rafting from Duke Sports Medicine, sprains and strains account for 35 percent of acute rafting, kayaking and canoeing injuries. Paddle and oar action puts a significant amount of pressure and stress on your ligaments, resulting in sprains, commonly in the wrists. If the ligaments in your wrist stretch or tear, you may deal with swelling, tenderness, pain and a reduced range of motion. 

Ankle sprains are also common. You may hurt your ankle as you exit or enter the raft or get your foot trapped in a rock. An ankle sprain occurs when the ligaments in your ankle tear or stretch.

2. Fractures

Getting a broken bone is another common type of injury that occurs during rafting. Fractures frequently occur when a rafter gets thrown out of the raft. You may break a bone if you hit the raft or a rock. Different types of fractures include open fractures, simple fractures, complete fractures and impacted fractures.

3. Contusions

A contusion is simply a bruise. This commonly occurs when something directly hits your body. If you fall from a fast-moving raft, you may suffer a serious blow. Depending on the force of the accident, your internal organs may even suffer bruising. 

Due to the often turbulent nature of rafting tours, injuries are bound to happen. If you suffer an accident while rafting, you may be able to hold the tour guide or company legally responsible.

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