At Vansbrosimningen, the participants and thus the safety is always the first priority. We want you to feel safe all the way from start to finish and strive for this by having:
- A total of 1900 meters of pontoons along the course.
- 120 volunteers who supervise the participants from the pontoons.
- 7 rescue areas along the course with nurses and first aid staff.
- Competition doctor on site.
- Ambulances ready to help.
- A mobile Medical unit at the arena with four doctors.
- Heated tent after finish.
- Lifeboats and SUPs (stand up paddleboards) where we do not have pontoons.
Tips from our security organization
- If you have heart, blood pressure or asthma problems – consult your doctor if it’s okay for you to participate.
- If you have had breathing difficulties in connection with swimming before – consult your doctor if it’s okay for you to participate.
- If you have previously been affected by SIPE (Swimming induced pulmonary edema), the risk is much higher that you are affected again, so consult your doctor before you participate.
- Try your wetsuit well before the start.
- Try swimming in open water if you haven’t done that before.
What types of breathing problems can occur during swimming in open water and how can they be prevented and treated?
There are various types of breathing problems that can occur during swimming in cold open water. A condition specific to this type of swimming is called SIPE (Swimming induced pulmonary edema). The affected person gets a cough, shortness of breath and reduced energy, which is caused by fluid entering the lungs. It can affect previously healthy people.
In case of trouble, it is often enough to rest, remove the wetsuit and stop swimming in order for the symptoms to return. If the symptoms don’t disappear, seek medical attention. By listening to the lungs, measuring oxygen saturation and making an ultrasound of the lungs, one can determine if it is SIPE. Treatment is then given, for example, with overpressure in a face mask (CPAP). The condition, in its lighter forms, is probably harmless but may return with similar effort.
To develop the diagnostics and to be able to provide effective care and well-founded advice, a research project was introduced in collaboration between Vansbrosimningen and Region Dalarna, Center for Clinical Research. The study is for people over the age of 18 and you may be asked to participate. We also ask swimmers without difficulty to participate as control persons. The condition, in its lighter forms, is probably harmless but may return with similar effort.
Other breathing problems that can occur are cold asthma and exertional asthma. If you have previously known symptoms of asthma, it is important to be well-medicated before starting.
Everyone can aspirate water during swimming. It usually helps to take it a little calmer and to regain control of breathing. A moment’s rest on the jetty may be needed sometimes and is perfectly okay, you won’t have to break the race just because you are resting.
Remember to try your wetsuit well in advance of the race by swimming in open water and warm up well before starting. A to tight wetsuit increases the risk of breathing difficulties.