With soaring temperatures and the school summer holidays about to start, Lincolnshire Fire & Rescue is urging everyone to have fun - but to stay safe around water.
Over the coming days and weeks, the Service will be helping people to be ‘water aware’ by highlighting the everyday dangers of being near water or mud.
According to the Chief Fire Officer’s Association, an average of around 400 people drown in the UK every year (one person every 20 hours), and the 44 per cent of people who drowned in 2014 had no intention of entering the water.
By following some simple advice, you can reduce your risk of ending up in the water, and as a result putting the life of your rescuer or the life of a fire fighter at risk:
• Never fool around near water - you might trip and fall in.
• Take care on riverbanks - they may be slippery or unstable.
• Go with a friend if you’re going swimming, fishing or boating - they can provide help if you’re in trouble in difficult water.
Lincolnshire Fire & Rescue is encouraging parents to be aware of where their children are this summer.
Darren Stones, water rescue specialist at Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue, said: “With temperatures rising, people may be tempted to cool off with a swim in the local river, canal, lake or reservoir.
“The water may look really inviting, but underneath the surface there can actually be lots of hazards – bikes and shopping trollies for example.
“A quick dip can quickly turn into a disaster, especially as you won’t know how deep the water is or how strong the currents are that can drag you away from the bank.
“Even when the sun is shining, the water is likely to be cold and can tire the most experienced swimmers.
“Apart from the risk of drowning, taking a plunge in unclean water could make you seriously ill and, in some cases, can be fatal.”
• Click here to watch Lincolnshire Fire & Rescue’s water safety information video.