Staying safe around water this winter

   Staying safe around water this winter

With temperatures plummeting and Christmas decorations going up, there is no doubt that winter is well and truly here.

While some of us will be going for long winter walks, followed by comforting hot drinks, others may be heading out for festive parties and celebrations. Whatever you are up to, if you are going to be near water it is important to be aware of the risks.

Sadly, the most recent statistics from the Water Incident Database (WAID) shows us that 254 people lost their life to a water-related fatality last year. As you might expect, the majority of accidental drownings occur in warmer weather but a little known fact is that the second highest peak for water-related fatalities is in winter.

This was the case in 2020, with the largest number (39 per cent) of accidental drownings occurring in summer and more than a fifth of fatal water-related incidents (24 per cent) taking place in the winter months.

There are a number of actions that you can take to keep you and your loved ones safe in order to enjoy the UK’s waterways this winter:

  • Be wise to winter hazards such as wet and slippery leaves next to waterways

  • Be ice aware – every year we get reports of ice-related drownings involving an attempted rescue of a pet or person. In many cases, the dog manages to get out itself. Keep your dog on a lead if you are going near ice and don’t throw sticks or balls onto frozen water for them. For more information on ice safety, visit RoSPA’s advice pages here

  • If you are out and about in the town drinking at a Christmas party or having a night out look after your friends. Royal Life Saving Society UK’s Don’t Drink and Drown campaign encourages smart decision making while intoxicated around water. Look after your friends and plan a safe route home away from waterways. #BeaMate.

Posted: 12/9/2021 4:49:18 PM 0 comments


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