During the school holidays, and in particular in hot weather, increasing numbers of children put themselves at risk of drowning. In 2006, 56 children drowned in the UK. Hereford & Worcester Fire and Rescue Service would like you to enjoy the water safely. Stay safe this summer by following this water safety code published by Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA).
Spot the dangers!
Water may look safe, but it can be dangerous. Learn to spot and keep away from dangers. You may swim well in a warm indoor pool, but that does not mean that you will be able to swim in cold water.
Jumping from bridges is dangerous and can result in serious injuries.
The water beneath them is often shallow and full of rubbish.
Water can be dangerous...
- it is very cold; it can be deep;
- it is difficult to estimate depth;
- there may be hidden currents;
- there may be hidden rubbish, e.g. shopping trolleys,
- it may be polluted and may make you ill;
- it can be difficult to get out (steep slimy banks);
- there are no lifeguards.
Take safety advice!
Special flags and notices may warn you of danger. Know what the signs mean and do what they tell you.
Children should always go with an adult, not by themselves. An adult can point out dangers or help if somebody gets into trouble.
Learn how to help!
You may be able to help yourself and others if you know what to do in an emergency. If you see someone in difficulty, tell somebody, preferably a Lifeguard if there is one nearby, or go to the nearest telephone, dial 999,
ask for the Police at inland water sites and the Coastguard at the beach.
A Fire Safety Message for Boat Owners
Hereford & Worcester Fire and Rescue Service encourages boat owners to take simple steps to stay safe from fire.
Although boat fires on our coastal and inland waters are less common than fires on land, when they do occur, they can have devastating consequences. Boats are often in remote locations with difficult access, which may result in firefighters taking longer to arrive at an incident and allowing a fire to totally destroy a boat and everything onboard. With over 450,000 motorised boats in the UK, and a growth in boating on many inland waterways, Hereford & Worcester Fire and Rescue Service is urging the boating population of across both counties to check that their boats are equipped with the correct fire safety equipment. People who live on their boats are most affected by fire, but many fires could be prevented if boat users take simple precautions.
“There were three fatal boat fires in the UK last year and it is fairly certain that a working and effective smoke alarm might have made a very real difference to the outcomes. Our wish is to see smoke alarms suitable for boats installed in at least the same proportion of boats with overnight accommodation as they are in domestic houses. “Any person in doubt about the alarm they need should contact us on 08451 224454, elderly or vulnerable individuals who live on boats can also call this number for a free Boat Fire Safety Check. We are here to make sure your boat is as fire safe as possible.” Community Safety Team.
Boat Fire Safety Checks are available throughout England, and offer boaters the opportunity to gain invaluable help and advice from their local Fire and Rescue Service about fire risks and fire safety equipment specific to their particular needs.
Boats present a challenging environment for smoke alarms due to high humidity, temperature extremes and vibration levels. Optical sensor alarms with hush buttons and sealed for life batteries are recommended and alarms should meet British Standard (BS) 5446:2000 Part 1, or BS EN 14606:2005. Boat owners should check for a British Standard ‘Kitemark’ or a LPCB ‘Horseshoe’ mark, both marks of independent testing and approval. As with smoke alarms in the home, alarms should be tested regularly and should never be disconnected.
For further information about boating fire safety, please contact the Boat Safety Scheme on 01923 201353 or visit www.boatsafetyscheme.com/site/FirePortal_216.asp
Flood advice guides
New audio flood advice guides available on a CD or to download as an MP3 file.