Drowning prevention week 2017

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SFRS supports drowning prevention week

Drowning and Prevention Week logo

The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service has thrown its support behind a hard-hitting campaign aimed at keeping people safe when near water.

On Friday, June 16, the Royal Life Saving Society (RLSS) UK will launch its Drowning Prevention Week - running until Monday, June 26.

The campaign launches in earnest ahead of the warmer summer months when people are more likely to enter open water.

This can put lives at risk - a fact underlined by latest statistics.

They reveal one person in the UK drowns every 20 hours while hundreds more survive but with life-changing injuries.

Assistant Chief Officer, David McGown, who is the Director of Prevention & Protection at the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service, said: “First and foremost, we want everyone to enjoy the summer but in a safe and responsible manner.

“It can look very appealing to go for a swim in a river or loch but strong underwater currents and unseen objects, such as rocks, are very real dangers.

“Furthermore, open water can become very cold just a few feet under the surface and can cause cramps or even Cold Water Shock.

“This can affect your stamina and ultimately your ability to swim deteriorates rapidly.

“It’s also important to remember not to enter the water if you’ve been drinking alcohol – this can impair your judgment and prevent you from reaching safety.

“By sharing water safety advice as far as we can we want to educate people on the best ways to stay safe.

“Although saving lives is and always will be a priority for us, we also want to ensure people know how to avoid dangerous situations.

“Prevention is key which is why campaigns such as Drowning Prevention Week are absolutely crucial in helping safeguard our communities.”

Find out additional information on water safety which can keep your family and you safe. You can also help spread the RLSS message in schools and community groups.

The activity can be adapted for pupils of all ages and abilities.  Before delivering this activity please preview the video to ensure that it is suitable for all of your pupils - please consider if any pupils have suffered a drowning experience through a family member or friend.

Find out more about The Royal Life Saving Society UK’s Drowning Prevention Week

To request for a member of the RLSS Volunteer Education Team to visit your school to deliver this activity please contact dpw@rlss.org.uk.

SFRS will also be posting on social media throughout the week using the hashtag #DPW #STOPDROWNING #BeWaterAware