The Maritime Authority today issued a warning of maximum interest to those whose skin is most insensitive to cold and bathe all year in the waters of Madeira: several Portuguese caravels were sighted on the south coast of the island, especially in the area between Ponta Gorda and the Lido.
For this reason, AM is alert to contact with this marine organism if it is sighted, since its poison is very dangerous and causes severe pain. With the scientific name “Physalia physalis”, the caravel-Portuguese lives on the surface of the sea thanks to a cylindrical float, blue-purplish and full of gas. Its tentacles can reach 30 meters.
The sting causes symptoms of severe pain and burning sensation at the site, in addition to irritation, redness, swelling and itching. Some people who are especially sensitive to stings and poison from jellyfish may have severe allergic reactions such as shortness of breath, palpitations, cramps, nausea, vomiting, fever, fainting, seizures, cardiac arrhythmias, and breathing problems. They should then be referred immediately to hospital emergency services.
In case of contact with the Portuguese caravel, the Maritime Authority advises not to rub the scratching of the affected area, so as not to spread the poison; do not use fresh water, alcohol or ammonia; do not place bandages; wash thoroughly with saline solution; Carefully remove the tentacles, if they have been caught, using gloves, a plastic tweezers and saline; apply vinegar to the affected area; apply hot bands or hot water to relieve pain; and consult a doctor as soon as possible.