Risks can include:
- Cold water shock.
- Submerged strainers, these are things that water can pass through but a person would get stuck such as tree branches, rubbish, even vehicles that may have been washed downstream. These may not be visible due to the depth or clarity of the water.
- Undercurrents, even though it may appear to be still, static water on the surface, there could potentially be undercurrents that have the ability to pin individuals to the bottom of the riverbed.
- Weirs are to be avoided at all costs. The biggest danger is at the bottom in the form of a ‘stopper.’ Here the recirculating current pulls you back towards the falls and pushes you under the water. In some cases, these are impossible to escape.
- Contamination from unclean/unsafe water leading to illnesses or diseases.
- NEVER be tempted to jump in yourself and rescue.
- Our crews have the training & equipment to help.
If you get into difficulty in the water #FloatToLive:
- Take a minute - The initial effects of cold water pass in the less than a minute so don’t try and swim straight away
- Relax and float - on your back to catch your breath. Try to get hold of something that will help
- Keep calm - then call for help or swim to safety if you’re able
If you see someone in difficulty in the water call 999 and ask for FIRE!
“Nearly 50 percent of people who accidentally drowned in 2020 had no intention of entering the water."