20 June 2022
Water Safety – The situation
- With temperatures soaring in the UK over next few days and the summer months ahead, it’s important to recognise that UK waters are still cold … so the weather might be hot, but the water is not and this is when we sadly see lives lost through cold water shock. Here the body is unable to adjust quickly enough to the temperature of the water and becomes weak very quickly, which can lead to tragedy.
Water Safety – Know the dangers
- As well as cold water shock there could be hazards underwater - shallow/hidden rocks or debris which could lead to life changing injuries. The water quality - in many areas, particularly unsupervised places which haven’t been risk assessed, is unlikely to be very good quality and could cause life threatening illnesses.
- Many areas of open water are in remote locations. If help is needed phone signals may be poor and help is likely to take longer to arrive than normal - don’t take this risk.
Water Safety – Use the water safely
- Stick together and tell someone where you are going. This includes dog walkers, cyclists, joggers and anglers who often do these activities alone and don’t intend to go in the water in the first place – Do you know where your loved ones are?
- It is best to only swim in open water as part of an organised group where help will be on hand.
- If someone is in trouble in open water, don’t panic as this will quickly reduce strength. Instead try to float on your back like a starfish - float to live.
- If help is needed call 999 and ask for the Fire Service if inland and for the Coastguard if by the sea.