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As we prepare for the summer months, Humberside Fire and Rescue Service (HFRS) is launching a new safety initiative called Water Safety Matters. The goal is simple, to make sure everyone is equipped with the knowledge to stay safe in and around water

Water safety Victoria Dock

Sarah Wilkinson, Head of Prevention, emphasised; "Our 'Water Safety Matters' campaign aims to empower people to enjoy summer safely. Sadly, last May two young people lost their lives after entering the water at High Eske Nature Reserve, despite the very best efforts of our firefighters and emergency service colleagues. While hotter weather may lure us to the water, it's crucial to know the risks, especially cold-water shock, which can have fatal consequences.

“In the event of someone falling into deep water, call for help and dial 999. It’s useful to have What3Words app to help emergency services in locating you precisely within a 3-meter square.”

Here are our tips to remember when near water:

  • Pay attention to any warning or safety signs.
  • Never swim alone in case you need help
  • Don’t dive or jumping straight into open water, this can cause potentially fatal cold water shock even on the hottest day
  • Avoid drinking alcohol when you’re near or on the water, it impairs judgement and your ability to swim – even for the strongest swimmers
  • Actively supervise children in and around water - drowning can happen fast and silently
  • Watch for trip or slip hazards around water and stick to designated pathways - note that riverbanks and cliff edges may be unstable and prone to collapse
  • If you find yourself unexpectedly in the water, don’t panic, extend your arms and legs out and float on your back until the effect of cold water shock pass
  • Never enter the water to try and rescue someone, call 999 and ask for the Fire Service if inland and the Coastguard if you are at the coast