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World Drowning Prevention Day 2022

   World Drowning Prevention Day 2022

Today, July 25, marks the second ever World Drowning Prevention Day. The event, which was designated last year in April by the United Nations General Assembly, is an important opportunity to raise awareness of drowning prevention and increase knowledge about water safety.

The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that on average 236,000 people lose their lives worldwide each year due to drowning, making it the third leading cause of unintentional injury death worldwide. In the UK, there are around 600 water-related fatalities each year – with drowning considered to be a leading concern in many communities around the UK. Some nations and local areas see a disproportionate number of fatalities. For example, Scotland and Wales have substantially higher accidental drowning fatality rates compared to other countries in the UK.

This year’s theme for World Drowning Prevention Day is: ‘do one thing to prevent drowning’ and, in an attempt to help reduce future drownings, the National Water Safety Forum (NWSF) has launched the Respect The Water campaign to coincide with the United Nation’s World Drowning Prevention Day.

This lifesaving campaign will focus on the following key messages to help spread awareness to the general public on what to do if you see someone struggling in the water this summer.
The steps to follow are:
  • Call 999
  • Tell the struggling person to try to float on their back
  • Throw them something that floats
The initiative is the first time the NWSF, which includes over 50 organisations as members, has come together to issue a public awareness campaign.  The key water safety advert was released today and can be accessed on a new Respect The Water website here.  The advert, accompanied by banner and poster design in high-risk drowning areas across the UK, will also be supplemented via social media activity throughout the day.

To help support and highlight the importance of World Drowning Prevention Day and the Respect The Water campaign, a number of events have also been planned.

In Wales, Water Safety Wales (WSW) will be focussing their efforts on a media and PR day based at Llandegfed Reservoir, a Dwr Cymru Welsh Water site, as well as supporting the Respect The Water campaign via out-of-home advertising in high-risk areas such as the counties Pembrokeshire and Conwy.

In Scotland, Water Safety Scotland (WSS) along with partners The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA), Scottish Water, the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) and the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI), are hosting a free Water Safety Open Day for the public at the Helix in Falkirk, featuring various live demonstrations and enlightening information stands, which will offer the opportunity for interactive fun whilst promoting key water safety messaging, including the Water Safety Code. Further information on the event is available here.

In addition, several landmarks across the UK will be turning blue tonight to show commitment to supporting World Drowning Prevention Day, as well as global and national drowning prevention measures. Some of the landmarks include: the Kelpies, St Andrews House, Royal Sick Kids and QUEH (Glasgow), Ness Bridge, Blackpool Tower, Millenium Bridge (Newcastle), Bristol City Hall, Goodison Park (Everton’s Stadium) and many, many more.

World Drowning Prevention Day is an opportunity for global and national prevention of drowning fatalities. The launch of the Respect The Water campaign provides an excellent opportunity for partners to share a consistent national message that can help prevent future fatalities. 
Carlene McAvoy, Leisure Safety Manager
Posted: 7/25/2022 9:28:40 AM 0 comments


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