RNLI issue Easter sea warning
The RNLI is calling on people visiting the coast this Easter to respect the water and remember sea temperatures are still cold.
The call comes as the charity’s lifeguards return to some of the region’s beaches on Good Friday (March 30).
In 2017, RNLI lifeguards across the north west of England dealt with 1,149 incidents.
The charity’s volunteer lifeboat crews in Cumbria launched 71 times and assisted 55 people, in Merseyside there were 53 launches and 48 people assisted and in Lancashire 151 lifeboat launches and 68 people offered assistance.
Chris Cousens, RNLI Community Safety Partner for the west, said: “RNLI lifesavers across the north west of England are dedicated to providing a professional rescue service to those who need it and last year, together assisted 6,789 people.
“Despite their commitment, tragically in the UK and Ireland at least one person dies from drowning each day.
“We believe that one drowning is one too many and we would encourage people to think ahead and to take the necessary precautions to keep them and their family safe at the coast.”
Around half of those who die at the coast find themselves in the water unexpectedly, often as a result of slips, trips or falls, meaning they weren’t properly prepared to get wet.
To prevent this happening, it is crucial people plan their activity, but also think about what they’d do in an emergency should something unexpected happen.
Check the weather and tide conditions and make sure your equipment is all in working order.
Carry a means of calling for help should something go wrong; know your capabilities and make sure you wear the necessary safety equipment.
If you see someone in trouble, alert the lifeguards or call 999 (or 112) and ask for the Coastguard. Do not enter the water yourself.
Chris said: “If you’re planning to get in the water, take advantage of the RNLI lifeguard service this Easter.
“A team of lifeguards will be able to advise and keep you safe.
“If you are feeling brave enough for a swim we’d recommend wearing a wetsuit at this time of year to stay warmer, and always swim or body board between the red and yellow flags where the lifeguards are watching.”
To find out how you can stay safe while enjoying your water activity, visit RespectTheWater.com