Drowning statistics a concern

2019-12-19 06:00
Lifeguards and sea rescue crews will be on high alert this festive season.

Lifeguards and sea rescue crews will be on high alert this festive season.

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Amid several fatal drowning incidents, the City of Cape Town’s Recreation and Parks Department has called on bathers to exercise caution and heed warnings.

“The peak summer season and popular beach days are still on the way and already 10 people have lost their lives. This is very disheartening, given the awareness drives and campaigns from the City to prevent drowning,” says Mayco member for community services and health Zahid Badroodien.

During the 2018/2019 season, there were 11 fatal drownings compared to the season before where 19 people lost their lives.

Of the 10 fatal drownings so far only two were persons over the age of 18. Nine out of the 10 were men.

“Our information indicates none of the 10 drownings was alcohol-related. However, two-thirds of drowning incidents are related to problematic social behaviour. You are reminded not to bring alcohol to the beach because not only is it illegal but alcohol impairs good judgment. Help us to keep you safe while you have fun,” says Badroodien.”

He adds indications are the recent drowning incidents are related to rip currents or swimming in undesignated bathing areas.

Badroodien calls on people to heed warnings on rip currents and to stay within safe zones on the beach.

He says the City has 282 seasonal beach lifeguards, in addition to 11 permanent senior lifeguards, who are stationed at 26 locations along the coast, including tidal pools.

“Our lifeguards do a sterling job, given the thousands of visitors who flock to our beaches on a daily basis. While they assist with many help outs, near-drownings and prevent a large number of serious incidents, they cannot do it alone. Visitors to the beach have a role to play and I implore them to remain in the designated bathing areas at all times, swim only at beaches where lifeguards are on duty, to not drink and swim, to only swim between the flags and for adults to supervise their children,” he says.

“Make sure you follow the rules and stay safe. It is your responsibility to ensure you do all you can to not get into danger. Weather conditions can change quickly so it’s important to heed warnings from lifeguards and to obey signage,” says Badroodien.

Lifeguards will be stationed at Silwerstroom Beach and tidal pool, Melkbosstrand, Big Bay, Milnerton, Clifton 4th Beach, Camps Bay Beach and tidal pool, Maiden’s Cove, Llandudno, Hout Bay, Fish Hoek, Clovelly, Kalk Bay, Danger Beach, St James tidal pool, Muizenberg Main Beach, Sunrise Beach, Strandfontein Beach and tidal pool, Blue Waters, Mnandi Beach, Monwabisi Beach and tidal pool, Macassar, Strand, Gordon’s Bay, Harmony Park tidal pool, Bikini Beach, Kogel Bay and Sparks tidal pool.

Safety tips to take note of include:

. Swim between the red and yellow flags, as these areas are patrolled by lifeguards;

. swim with others;

. supervise children at all times;

. stay hydrated and watch out for signs of dehydration such as red, dry skin, rapid/weak pulse and rapid, shallow breathing;

. don’t drink alcohol before you swim as it impairs your judgement; and

. don’t dive into unfamiliar water as there may be rocks or other dangers.

If you get caught in a rip current:

. Don’t panic;

. don’t try to swim straight back to the shore against the current as this will exhaust you;

. try to tread water or turn on your back and float (rip tides get weaker as they go further out);

. raise one arm in the air and wave for help to alert people on the beach that you are in trouble; and

. swim parallel to the beach, out of the current, and then use waves to help you get back to the beach.

Amid several fatal drowning incidents, the City of Cape Town’s Recreation and Parks Department has called on bathers to exercise caution and heed warnings.

“The peak summer season and popular beach days are still on the way and already 10 people have lost their lives. This is disheartening, given the awareness drives and campaigns from the City to prevent drowning,” says Mayco member for community services and health Zahid Badroodien.

During the 2018/2019 season, there were 11 fatal drownings compared to the season before where 19 people lost their lives.

Of the 10 fatal drownings so far only two were persons over the age of 18. Nine out of the 10 were men.

“Our information indicates none of the 10 drownings was alcohol-related. However, two-thirds of drowning incidents are related to problematic social behaviour. You are reminded not to bring alcohol to the beach because not only is it illegal but alcohol impairs good judgment. Help us to keep you safe while you have fun,” says Badroodien.”

He adds indications are the recent drowning incidents are related to rip currents or swimming in undesignated bathing areas.

Badroodien calls on people to heed warnings on rip currents and to stay within safe zones on the beach.

He says the City has 282 seasonal beach lifeguards, in addition to 11 permanent senior lifeguards, who are stationed at 26 locations along the coast, including tidal pools.

“Our lifeguards do a sterling job, given the thousands of visitors who flock to our beaches on a daily basis. While they assist with many help outs, near-drownings and prevent a large number of serious incidents, they cannot do it alone. Visitors to the beach have a role to play and I implore them to remain in the designated bathing areas at all times, swim only at beaches where lifeguards are on duty, to not drink and swim, to only swim between the flags and for adults to supervise their children,” he says.

“It is your responsibility to ensure you do all you can to not get into danger. Weather conditions can change quickly so it’s important to heed warnings from lifeguards and to obey signage,” says Badroodien.

Lifeguards will be stationed at Silwerstroom Beach and tidal pool, Melkbosstrand, Big Bay, Milnerton, Clifton 4th Beach, Camps Bay Beach and tidal pool, Maiden’s Cove, Llandudno, Hout Bay, Fish Hoek, Clovelly, Kalk Bay, Danger Beach, St James tidal pool, Muizenberg Main Beach, Sunrise Beach, Strandfontein Beach and tidal pool, Blue Waters, Mnandi Beach, Monwabisi Beach and tidal pool, Macassar, Strand, Gordon’s Bay, Harmony Park tidal pool, Bikini Beach, Kogel Bay and Sparks tidal pool.

Safety tips to take note of include:

. Swim between the red and yellow flags, as these areas are patrolled by lifeguards;

. swim with others;

. supervise children at all times;

. stay hydrated and watch out for signs of dehydration such as red, dry skin, rapid/weak pulse and rapid, shallow breathing;

. don’t drink alcohol before you swim as it impairs your judgement; and

. don’t dive into unfamiliar water as there may be rocks or other dangers.

If you get caught in a rip current:

. Don’t panic;

. don’t try to swim straight back to the shore against the current as this will exhaust you;

. try to tread water or turn on your back and float (rip tides get weaker as they go further out);

. raise one arm in the air and wave for help to alert people on the beach that you are in trouble; and

. swim parallel to the beach, out of the current, and then use waves to help you get back to the beach.

Amid several fatal drowning incidents, the City of Cape Town’s Recreation and Parks Department has called on bathers to exercise caution and heed warnings.

“The peak summer season and popular beach days are still on the way and already 10 people have lost their lives. This is very disheartening, given the awareness drives and campaigns from the City to prevent drowning,” says Mayco member for community services and health Zahid Badroodien.

During the 2018/2019 season, there were 11 fatal drownings compared to the season before where 19 people lost their lives.

Of the 10 fatal drownings so far only two were persons over the age of 18. Nine out of the 10 were men.

“Our information indicates none of the 10 drownings was alcohol-related. However, two-thirds of drowning incidents are related to problematic social behaviour.

“You are reminded not to bring alcohol to the beach because not only is it illegal but alcohol impairs good judgment. Help us to keep you safe while you have fun,” says Badroodien.”

He adds indications are the recent drowning incidents are related to rip currents or swimming in undesignated bathing areas.

Badroodien calls on people to heed warnings on rip currents and to stay within safe zones on the beach.

He says the City has 282 seasonal beach lifeguards, in addition to 11 permanent senior lifeguards, who are stationed at 26 locations along the coast, including tidal pools.

“Our lifeguards do a sterling job, given the thousands of visitors who flock to our beaches on a daily basis. While they assist with many help outs, near-drownings and prevent a large number of serious incidents, they cannot do it alone.

“Visitors to the beach have a role to play and I implore them to remain in the designated bathing areas at all times, swim only at beaches where lifeguards are on duty, to not drink and swim, to only swim between the flags and for adults to supervise their children,” he says.

“Make sure you follow the rules and stay safe. It is your responsibility to ensure you do all you can to not get into danger. Weather conditions can change quickly so it’s important to heed warnings from lifeguards and to obey signage,” says Badroodien.

Lifeguards will be stationed at Silwerstroom Beach and tidal pool, Melkbosstrand, Big Bay, Milnerton, Clifton 4th Beach, Camps Bay Beach and tidal pool, Maiden’s Cove, Llandudno, Hout Bay, Fish Hoek, Clovelly, Kalk Bay, Danger Beach, St James tidal pool, Muizenberg Main Beach, Sunrise Beach, Strandfontein Beach and tidal pool, Blue Waters, Mnandi Beach, Monwabisi Beach and tidal pool, Macassar, Strand, Gordon’s Bay, Harmony Park tidal pool, Bikini Beach, Kogel Bay and Sparks tidal pool.

Safety tips to take note of include:

. Swim between the red and yellow flags, as these areas are patrolled by lifeguards;

. swim with others;

. supervise children at all times;

. stay hydrated and watch out for signs of dehydration such as red, dry skin, rapid/weak pulse and rapid, shallow breathing;

. don’t drink alcohol before you swim as it impairs your judgement; and

. don’t dive into unfamiliar water as there may be rocks or other dangers.

If you get caught in a rip current:

. Don’t panic;

. don’t try to swim straight back to the shore against the current as this will exhaust you;

. try to tread water or turn on your back and float (rip tides get weaker as they go further out);

. raise one arm in the air and wave for help to alert people on the beach that you are in trouble; and

. swim parallel to the beach, out of the current, and then use waves to help you get back to the beach.

Amid several fatal drowning incidents, the City of Cape Town’s Recreation and Parks Department has called on bathers to exercise caution and heed warnings.

“The peak summer season and popular beach days are still on the way and already 10 people have lost their lives. This is very disheartening, given the awareness drives and campaigns from the City to prevent drowning,” says Mayco member for community services and health Zahid Badroodien.

During the 2018/2019 season, there were 11 fatal drownings compared to the season before where 19 people lost their lives.

Of the 10 fatal drownings so far only two were persons over the age of 18. Nine out of the 10 were men.

“Our information indicates none of the 10 drownings was alcohol-related. However, two-thirds of drowning incidents are related to problematic social behaviour. You are reminded not to bring alcohol to the beach because not only is it illegal but alcohol impairs good judgment. Help us to keep you safe while you have fun,” says Badroodien.”

He adds indications are the recent drowning incidents are related to rip currents or swimming in undesignated bathing areas.

Badroodien calls on people to heed warnings on rip currents and to stay within safe zones on the beach.

He says the City has 282 seasonal beach lifeguards, in addition to 11 permanent senior lifeguards, who are stationed at 26 locations along the coast, including tidal pools.

“Our lifeguards do a sterling job, given the thousands of visitors who flock to our beaches on a daily basis. While they assist with many help outs, near-drownings and prevent a large number of serious incidents, they cannot do it alone. Visitors to the beach have a role to play and I implore them to remain in the designated bathing areas at all times, swim only at beaches where lifeguards are on duty, to not drink and swim, to only swim between the flags and for adults to supervise their children,” he says.

“Make sure you follow the rules and stay safe. It is your responsibility to ensure you do all you can to not get into danger. Weather conditions can change quickly so it’s important to heed warnings from lifeguards and to obey signage,” says Badroodien.

Lifeguards will be stationed at Silwerstroom Beach and tidal pool, Melkbosstrand, Big Bay, Milnerton, Clifton 4th Beach, Camps Bay Beach and tidal pool, Maiden’s Cove, Llandudno, Hout Bay, Fish Hoek, Clovelly, Kalk Bay, Danger Beach, St James tidal pool, Muizenberg Main Beach, Sunrise Beach, Strandfontein Beach and tidal pool, Blue Waters, Mnandi Beach, Monwabisi Beach and tidal pool, Macassar, Strand, Gordon’s Bay, Harmony Park tidal pool, Bikini Beach, Kogel Bay and Sparks tidal pool.

Safety tips to take note of include:

. Swim between the red and yellow flags, as these areas are patrolled by lifeguards;

. swim with others;

. supervise children at all times;

. stay hydrated and watch out for signs of dehydration such as red, dry skin, rapid/weak pulse and rapid, shallow breathing;

. don’t drink alcohol before you swim as it impairs your judgement; and

. don’t dive into unfamiliar water as there may be rocks or other dangers.

If you get caught in a rip current:

. Don’t panic;

. don’t try to swim straight back to the shore against the current as this will exhaust you;

. try to tread water or turn on your back and float (rip tides get weaker as they go further out);

. raise one arm in the air and wave for help to alert people on the beach that you are in trouble; and

. swim parallel to the beach, out of the current, and then use waves to help you get back to the beach.

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