Walker pledges support to drowning prevention campaign

Worcester MP Robin Walker is urging his constituency to get involved with Drowning Prevention Week in a bid to prevent summer tragedies. 

Drowning is a leading cause of accidental death for children in the UK, with latest stats showing that, in the last five years, 48 children aged nine and under drowned, and 147 young people aged 10 to 19 lost their life.

Annually, around 400 people accidentally drown and summer months pose a particularly high-risk. Last year, 85 people drowned in July and August alone.

Drowning Prevention Week, the national campaign run by The Royal Life Saving Society UK (RLSS UK), aims to ensure everyone knows how to have fun and stay safe near water. This year running from 16 to 26 June, the campaign will see hundreds of leisure centres, schools, businesses and youth groups utilising RLSS UK’s water safety resources in their communities.

The Worcester-based charity have published water-safety advice on how to stay safe around water this summer on their website.

Robin said: “It’s awful to think that around 400 people needlessly die from drowning in the UK every year. It’s vitally important to get water safety at the forefront of people’s minds and I urge everyone to make sure that they, and their families, learn how to stay safe.”

“I met with the staff at RLSS UK at the official opening of their new premises earlier this year and it was useful to meet them again this morning to discuss what can be done to help people stay safe this summer”.

Di Steer, RLSS UK’s Director of Communications and Public Affairs said: “We want as many people as possible to learn essential water safety skills, so that they can still have fun, but stay safe.

“The number of accidental drowning incidences has, over the last few years, reached a plateau of around 400. There is no quick fix to get this number down further. There are many at-risk groups for many different reasons. Education to instil a change in behaviour is considered the only method that will reach the final 400, as well as future generations, and help prevent these tragic deaths and accidents.

“We can’t do it alone. We need everyone’s help to raise awareness about the reality of accidental drowning, and we’re delighted that Robin is supporting us in our efforts.”

Drowning Prevention Week also aims to raise money for the RLSS UK’s wider drowning prevention work, which includes providing support for families affected by drowning or near drowning. Donate now by texting DPRW17 and an amount to 70070.

 

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Notes to Editors

To view the RLSS UK’s website please see:

www.rlss.org.uk