Be water aware, whatever the weather
Come rain or shine residents will be spending time on the county’s waterways this week, but would you know how to stay safe when near water?
This week is Drowning Prevention Week, a national campaign from the Royal Life Saving Society UK (RLSS UK), and runs from 16th – 26th June 2017.
In support of the campaign, Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service (GFRS) are continuing their #bewateraware work to help prevent drowning or injuries.
On average one person drowns every 20 hours in the UK and hundreds more suffer life changing injuries through near drowning. Many of these occur when people are taking part in activities such as running or walking beside water.
By spreading water safety advice far and wide, Drowning Prevention Week aims to teach people how to stay safe near water.
The campaign encourages schools, clubs, leisure centres and communities to promote water safety through events, lessons, games and activities in a bid to make people more aware of the dangers of water.
Throughout the week, Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service will be sharing tips on how to stay ‘water aware’ using the hashtags #DPW and #STOPDROWNING.
GFRS will also be at Cheltenham Lido’s annual Rescue Day in memory of Ron Coltman MBE on Saturday 17th June 2017. Crews will be on scene from 10:30am giving live rescue demonstrations and advising the public on all things related to water safety.
Stewart Edgar, chief fire officer, said: “Drowning Prevention Week is a great chance for us to spread the message of being aware when you are around water.
“In Gloucestershire we have successfully reduced the number of fire deaths by focussing on prevention work and now we must apply the same principle to tackling drowning.
“We want to make sure that people are having fun, but are safe when around water.”
Cllr Nigel Moor, cabinet member responsible for fire at Gloucestershire County Council, said: “We’re lucky to have some beautiful stretches of water in the county. From the Rivers Severn and Avon, to Gloucester Docks and Cotswold Water Park.
“However, it is important that residents consider how they can keep themselves, and their friends and families safe next time they are around water.”
For more information about Drowning Prevention week, please visit http://www.rlss.org.uk/water-safety/drowning-prevention-week/ or email firstname.lastname@example.org.