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Dead Sea: Where you can’t drown but still die!

dead sea where swimming is floating
November 5, 2018

“Dead Sea” is one of those names that can send shivers down the spine of the faint of heart. Although spooky as it may sound, the dead sea isn’t as dead as it seems, because it is a popular tourist destination. Hundreds of thousands of tourists visit the place each year not just for the sake of enjoyment but also for the ‘health treatment’ the salty water offers to the skin.

First things first…

Where is the Dead Sea exactly located?

The Dead Sea lies on the border of Israel and Jordan and is 1300 feet below the sea level, which makes it the lowest point on the planet.

Why is the Dead Sea called….err….the Dead Sea?

Since the dead sea is full of salt, it was originally named the Salty Lake. However, Roman Era visitors to Judea had begun to refer to it as the ‘Dead Sea’, because the waters were devoid of all life-forms, whether flora or fauna.

This fact makes the sea an ideal destination for tourists, who can have a good time ‘swimming’ without the fear of sharks and other sea creatures. Notably, the Dead Sea water has a density of 1.24 kg/liter, which implies that swimming here = floating!

Why can’t one drown in the Dead Sea?

In dense, salty water, a little ‘body’ displaces a lot of mass, which causes most of the body to stay out of the water; hence, it’s hard to drown a person when most of their body is floating on the surface.

If one can’t drown in the Dead Sea, why are people still dying?

While swimming/floating, people inadvertently poison themselves with an overdose of salt. Notably, excessive salt can damage the kidneys and the heart.

Moreover, the fact that you can’t put your foot on the ground can be catastrophic as when someone starts drowning with their head inside, the only way to save themselves is to put their feet on the ground and only swimmers know how difficult it is.

FYI Fact– The dead sea is ten times more salty than the Mediterranean and three times more salty than the Great Salt Lake!

 

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