Council Calls on Residents to Enjoy the Water Safely
Ahead of the warmer summer months when people are more likely to be enjoying the water, Newry, Mourne and Down District Council is appealing to residents to consider their safety and think before they act.
In support of The Royal Life Saving Society’s Drowning Prevention Week, the Council aims to highlight the dangers of playing in and around water whether it is the paddling pool in your back garden, swimming in open waters or using the swimming pool on holiday.
Newry, Mourne and Down District Council Chairperson, Councillor Roisin Mulgrew said, “Drowning Prevention Week provides a great opportunity for us to remind people of how important it is to remain safe and vigilant when in and around water. We aren’t saying you can’t enjoy getting wet this summer, but we do want people to know that the dangers of drowning are real and can be prevented.
“On a warm day it can be very appealing to go for a swim in open waters to cool down, but we want to remind people there are unseen dangers such as hidden rocks or strong underwater currents that even the strongest swimmer may be unable to deal with. We are also highlighting the dangers of entering the water if you’ve been drinking alcohol. Alcohol can impair your judgement and reduce your ability to get to safety, increasing the risk of drowning. The key message here is, ‘think before you act’.
“We want to remind parents and carers that children can drown in as little as 3-5cm of water. If you are using a paddling pool in the garden or heading away on holiday, never leave a child unaccompanied in and around water. Always empty the paddling pool when you are finished with it and store it upside down. If your child wants to paddle in the sea, ensure they are always with an adult and take extra caution when using inflatable toys.”
Drowning Prevention Week runs from Friday 15 – Monday 25 June 2018 and aims to support adults and children to safely enjoy the water. Through local partnerships, education, challenges, workshops and resources for parents and schools, The Royal Life Saving Society is reaching communities with important water safety advice.
If you would like further advice on keeping children under 5 safe, contact the Newry, Mourne and Down District Council’s Home Safety officer at firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 0300 013 3333. For more information on Drowning Prevention Week visit https://rlss.org.uk/water-safety/drowning-prevention-week/